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  • Ever had a bad stop?

    I had a bad stop today. The manager says I'm not fired, but he's not happy, and the DM will surely be pissed. I have to go in tomorrow (was going to be my day off) and fill out a statement. This is my one and only screw up allowed, I bet. I just got transferred to a different store where the LPM isn't my friend (at the old store, we were friends before I got the job). He's way cool though, but I don't know him like the guy who got me hired at Kmart. I shouldn't have stopped him since I didn't actually see him conceal. However, I had seen him in there before scoping the place out, and not buying anything. We happened to be in the outside garden area one time and he tried to see if he could open the gate. He must have come in six times that day and not even selected anything. Today he comes in and grabs a basket, and I'm all trying hard to impress the boss so I'm like "yeah, he's gonna steal for sure." I see him go straight to electronics and take six Playstation 2 games, and one Nintendo DS. He didn't even look at the titles, he just grabs the whole stack. I follow him around for an hour or so, and he lost me in this one corner because if I go over there, he will see me and not shoplift. When he comes out, he has his basket still with some food in it, but no games. I was sure he stole. He dumps the basket on the floor at a random place and leaves. I wanted to get one today really bad, because I had been letting them go all day due to not having all six steps. I stop him, and he had hidden them in the corner, so he could come back later for them. "****."

    He comes back into the store without being forced at all, and offers to let me search him and wants to go back to the location of the games. He must have seen me following him, or he's just a chicken and changed his mind. I go get the games after he leaves and all of them are there. I'm going to get me arse chewed tomorrow morning.

    Anyone ever stopped someone for shoplifting and they didn't do it or had dumped?
    Top Flight

  • #2
    1st I hope that everything goes ok during your statement. We all make mistakes from time to time...and it's important to learn from them.

    2nd As for still having a job you're fortunate that you do. Most retail companies, (that I'm aware of) have a policy of 0 bad stops or you lose your job for just the 1st that comes along.

    As for myself, I was fortunate enough to not be involved in a "bad stop" where I worked. I was however, part of a "discontinued stop" where the suspect made it off property and we let him go. And for that the DLP wanted to terminate 3 LP's Go figure..... The closest I came to being part of one was when I'd just gotten to work not even 10 minutes after it had occured And I thnk that some of this applied to your situation...

    From my understanding, an LP called in 2 guys that were entering the store. They were followed constantly both on the floor & CCTV. They were seen approaching & selecting knives from the shelf. Concealment was observed as they both tore open their packages and placed the knives in their pockets. Then, as they were observed walking throughout the store the LP in CCTV lost sight of the suspects for maybe 10 seconds. The LP that made the call-in also made the call to stop them as they left the store against several protests from the LP in CCTV. When they got to the LPM office 0 knives were produced Turns out that during those 10 seconds, the 2 suspects got spooked and dropped their knives before leaving the store. Needless to say the 2 LP's almost lost their jobs with 1 getting a "final" notice & both weren't allowed to apprehend anyone for a month.

    I can understand wanting to make an impression on the new boss. But is it worth the possibility of having a "bad stop" and maybe losing your job in the process...as you're finding out? Point being that NO ONE is worth losing a job over. Always make sure that each and every step is accounted for and you should be ok.

    Again, I hope that everything goes for the better and good luck in the future.
    "Life In Every Breath"

    Comment


    • #3
      I can't believe you got in trouble for a "discontinued stop." I have those all the time because we are not really supposed to chase people. If they run past the sidewalk, you're done.
      My boss called the DM and he said since I haven't been with the company for more than 90 days, I get a second chance. I will have to be "trained" again, and won't be making any stops until I get to witness 3 more with the LPM. Which could be a while, we don't get people everyday at this store. It's fairly nice and the shoplifters are people you wouldn't expect to steal. My LPM from the other store (the one that is my friend) used to work at the one I'm at now. He said he got old ladies and people that didn't look shady at all. I must say, I'm not nearly as excited about the job anymore. Now I look like a dumbass, and have nothing to do but MPS and safety stuff. If I was going to get fired, it would have happened already, but I feel like I failed. I'm bummed because I worked a whole week when the LPM was out of town, my first week, and I got one stop. He was impressed but still pointed out some mistakes that I made.
      Top Flight

      Comment


      • #4
        You know where you went wrong this time.

        Ok Op let's go through the motions here.

        1. You did not see him select or conceal.
        2. You did not see him conceal anything later
        3. You lost visual at some stage with the games
        4. You had a choice to observe or customer serve this bloke (unless he denies service).
        5. You could have had a genuine PA call to have security called to ____ department (never be afraid to use uniforms if around to hover around scopers)
        6. You could have also used a sales person to hover around (again depending on demand)
        7. As a store LPM I was dressed in a suit and would often serve these scopers myself if no1 else was around (sometimes they ask for help and I bluff my way through reading a box or knowing products).

        The days of chasing people outside a store are over unless you are right out the front of the store. The BS of running into carparks is grounds for staff to be killed or someone else injured or killed. See all of these years have taught me GOOD KARMA - no yelling or anything else (in real life different story). LOL.

        You know where you went wrong - you identified you lost visual and did not see selection and concealment. So what you need to do now is consider what YOU are going to do next time you are on the job. If you have CCTV and they have visual and you lose sight - they have the eye in the sky so you are ok to continue - but once you lose sight you need to start over again.

        Not sure of your esperience but many so called veteran LPO's will cut corners to get their arrests or made up stories. Most importantly you need to follow (I think the USA has 5 steps) think of a hand then before you can arrest. But remember nothing is worth your safety or those of your co-workers of the public coming in to buy stuff to pay for your wages. If you do arrest, make sure you announce what you are doing so others can hear you and if you need to say it 4 times, say it 5 times as people THINK they heard something different.

        Making mistakes is all about learning and I can tell you to get to my level I have made mistakes but learnt over the the years and passed on my knowledge as well. Bad stops not only cost the company money but they also cost the reputation of a business and can set off a path of where people go looking for a law suit against your employer. As most companies have an insurance excess to pay before a claim, a bad stop could cost the company $50k - ?????k (there is no limit).

        But I do warn you, if you are chasing arrests like a former LPO of mine did - he did not last long with the other LP staff and I had him transferred. Numbers do not make you a good LPO (ok shrinkage does) but if you want to get results then you need get back on the horse and take your medicine before you are a better LPO - alot wiser too. Good Luck.
        "Keep your friends close and your enemies even closer" Sun Tzu

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by liteyouup View Post
          I had a bad stop today. The manager says I'm not fired, but he's not happy, and the DM will surely be pissed. I have to go in tomorrow (was going to be my day off) and fill out a statement. This is my one and only screw up allowed, I bet. I just got transferred to a different store where the LPM isn't my friend (at the old store, we were friends before I got the job). He's way cool though, but I don't know him like the guy who got me hired at Kmart. I shouldn't have stopped him since I didn't actually see him conceal. However, I had seen him in there before scoping the place out, and not buying anything. We happened to be in the outside garden area one time and he tried to see if he could open the gate. He must have come in six times that day and not even selected anything. Today he comes in and grabs a basket, and I'm all trying hard to impress the boss so I'm like "yeah, he's gonna steal for sure." I see him go straight to electronics and take six Playstation 2 games, and one Nintendo DS. He didn't even look at the titles, he just grabs the whole stack. I follow him around for an hour or so, and he lost me in this one corner because if I go over there, he will see me and not shoplift. When he comes out, he has his basket still with some food in it, but no games. I was sure he stole. He dumps the basket on the floor at a random place and leaves. I wanted to get one today really bad, because I had been letting them go all day due to not having all six steps. I stop him, and he had hidden them in the corner, so he could come back later for them. "****."

          He comes back into the store without being forced at all, and offers to let me search him and wants to go back to the location of the games. He must have seen me following him, or he's just a chicken and changed his mind. I go get the games after he leaves and all of them are there. I'm going to get me arse chewed tomorrow morning.

          Anyone ever stopped someone for shoplifting and they didn't do it or had dumped?
          I hope everything works out for you. If you remain on the job, this should serve as a wakeup call to make sure you follow all of your employer's policy & procedures.

          I have just such a case laying in front of me, on my desk. The facts are a little different and there was some violence involved - but the mechanics are the same. They're asking for $1,000,000.
          Retail Security Consultant / Expert Witness
          Co-Author - Effective Security Management 6th Edition

          Contributor to Retail Crime, Security and Loss Prevention: An Encyclopedic Reference

          Comment


          • #6
            Nrm is right. It's not just about the shoplifting numbers anymore. It's all about the decisions we make during those situations that put the company at a liability or not. The times and industry have changed and it's no longer "cops and robbers." For better or worse it's a lot of operationial compliance. I think better because that's something we can control. I've had incidents years ago when I was new, best thing to do is take the punishment, and definately learn from them and show your company you have through your decisions. Those things happen to the best of us, it's all about what you do after the fact to ensure it doesn't happen again.

            Hello all!! I'm a young LPM that just joined and found this post.
            Last edited by CJB_LP; 01-21-2008, 02:22 PM.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by CJB_LP View Post
              Nrm is right. It's not about the numbers anymore. It's all about the desicions we make during those situations that put the company at a liability or not. The times and industry have changed and it's no longer "cops and robbers." For better or worse it's a lot of operationial compliance. I think better because that's something we can control. I've had incidents years ago when I was new, best thing to do is take the punishment, and definately learn from them and show your company you have through your desicions. Those things happen to the best of us, it's all about what you do after the fact to ensure it doesn't happen again.

              Hello all!! I'm a young LPM that just joined and found this post.
              Welcome to the site.
              Retail Security Consultant / Expert Witness
              Co-Author - Effective Security Management 6th Edition

              Contributor to Retail Crime, Security and Loss Prevention: An Encyclopedic Reference

              Comment


              • #8
                Don't get me wrong. We all have numbers and goals for each store that need to be met. But are those video games worth a 1,000,000 lawsuit if steps were missed. One thing I've learned through the years that you already know, THEY ALWAYS COME BACK!! Good luck with the incident, hope all goes well.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Maybe if I learned to spell simple words that would help too. Looking at my post I realize the errors. LOL.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by CJB_LP View Post
                    Maybe if I learned to spell simple words that would help too. Looking at my post I realize the errors. LOL.
                    You can go back, at any time, and edit your post to correct errors.
                    Retail Security Consultant / Expert Witness
                    Co-Author - Effective Security Management 6th Edition

                    Contributor to Retail Crime, Security and Loss Prevention: An Encyclopedic Reference

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hi CJ - and welcome to the forums.

                      Part of my role is examing claims for our company in damages, injuries and safety issues and it amazes me at the amount of money people will claim and get paid in settlement (sorry USA loves lawsuits and thankfully in Australia we have not gone that crazy - YET).

                      Bad stops occur because not all steps are covered and it happens over and over again as some LP staff let their ego's control their work. In my previous role, I visited a high risk store and had the SM tell me that a male custmer had concealed a $200.00 set of PC speakers under his shirt. I saw nothing so just observed him with a bulge under his shirt. The SM pointed to an empty product box and told me again what he allegedly observed. Near the door, the male customer's friends spent some good $$ and I noticed the bulge moving under his shirt when he pulled out a tiny puppy to cuddle. The SM went red in the face realising what MAY have happened if I had not been there.

                      Curtis - what only $1m ? Less the legal and taxes that won't be much ?

                      Another reason why I say to people to get the maximum insurance they can afford for liability policies on personal injury, as $1m claims last year can now jump to $10m next yea.
                      "Keep your friends close and your enemies even closer" Sun Tzu

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by NRM_Oz View Post
                        Another reason why I say to people to get the maximum insurance they can afford for liability policies on personal injury, as $1m claims last year can now jump to $10m next yea.
                        Instead of paying for more insurance, why not focus on reducing the liability? Liability is not random. It is controllable.
                        www.plsolutions.net
                        www.customerloyaltysolutions.com

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by liteyouup View Post
                          I had a bad stop today. The manager says I'm not fired, but he's not happy, and the DM will surely be pissed. I have to go in tomorrow (was going to be my day off) and fill out a statement. This is my one and only screw up allowed, I bet. I just got transferred to a different store where the LPM isn't my friend (at the old store, we were friends before I got the job). He's way cool though, but I don't know him like the guy who got me hired at Kmart. I shouldn't have stopped him since I didn't actually see him conceal. However, I had seen him in there before scoping the place out, and not buying anything. We happened to be in the outside garden area one time and he tried to see if he could open the gate. He must have come in six times that day and not even selected anything. Today he comes in and grabs a basket, and I'm all trying hard to impress the boss so I'm like "yeah, he's gonna steal for sure." I see him go straight to electronics and take six Playstation 2 games, and one Nintendo DS. He didn't even look at the titles, he just grabs the whole stack. I follow him around for an hour or so, and he lost me in this one corner because if I go over there, he will see me and not shoplift. When he comes out, he has his basket still with some food in it, but no games. I was sure he stole. He dumps the basket on the floor at a random place and leaves. I wanted to get one today really bad, because I had been letting them go all day due to not having all six steps. I stop him, and he had hidden them in the corner, so he could come back later for them. "****."

                          He comes back into the store without being forced at all, and offers to let me search him and wants to go back to the location of the games. He must have seen me following him, or he's just a chicken and changed his mind. I go get the games after he leaves and all of them are there. I'm going to get me arse chewed tomorrow morning.

                          Anyone ever stopped someone for shoplifting and they didn't do it or had dumped?
                          Never happened to me, but that sucks. You should have checked the area prior to stopping him, but hindsight is always 20/20.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I did see him approach and select. That's why I was so sure. He grabbed all the games in the stack that he selected, without looking at the titles. I still made a bad descision though. He had them in a good spot, I probably wouldn't have seen them there. I had enough time to search his basket after he dumped it, or the corner. I chose the basket. I was working alone, and had no one to run the cameras for me. The office is right next to electronics so when I got out there, he still had the games in his basket.

                            I'm not fired, but I was told it's my "one get out of jail free card." The guy will not complain as he knows what he was going to do, and got spooked at the last minute. I showed him the video of the guy selecting the games and he agreed, he was going to take them. He was actually pretty cool about it considering the circumstances. The DM hasn't spoken to me yet though, but he gave the OK for me to stay. I killed that first impression .
                            Top Flight

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Lynch Mob View Post
                              Instead of paying for more insurance, why not focus on reducing the liability? Liability is not random. It is controllable.
                              As an RM it is part of my job to examine that naturally but insurance is like a first aid kit - you never know when you are going to need it and for what reason. As money hungry people with their blood sucking lawyers keep pushing up the law suits, and judges allowing this to happen, this will create a vicious cycle. Reduction of risk is the 1st step but how many small businesses have an RM plan ? I can name many bigger retailers in Australia who have NEVER had a site RM plan - just waiting for a law suit to be filed.

                              OP - hindsight is great and we can all preach from experience, but it takes experience to learn and from this experience you will learn very fast indeed. Best of luck with going forward from here.
                              "Keep your friends close and your enemies even closer" Sun Tzu

                              Comment

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