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  • Minnesota IPC Mall Guards In Big Trouble

    Rosedale mall thefts: Inside job?
    Merchandise and thousands in cash were seized by police, who accuse two guards of helping themselves after hours.

    By Joy Powell, Star Tribune

    Last update: June 08, 2007 – 10:19 PM

    It was, if the allegations are true, security guards gone wild.
    After their nightly rounds at Rosedale Center, at least two guards set to work with burglary tools and safe combinations, then sneaked off with cash, flat-screen TVs, skateboards, clothing, margarita makers and more, according to search-warrant documents filed Friday.

    Four people have been arrested in connection with the heists, which began in October at the mall in Roseville. The guards sold some of the loot or returned it to other stores for cash; the rest they stashed in an apartment they shared and also in an apartment leased by one of their girlfriends, the documents allege.

    In searches of Roseville and Minneapolis apartments and also of a car on Wednesday, police seized more than $20,000 in property.

    It's believed to have come from Williams-Sonoma, Abercrombie & Fitch, Caribou Coffee, Air Traffic, Zumiez, Verizon, Foot Locker, Rosetta Stone, World Poker Store, Bath & Body Works, and Things Remembered, according to police inventories.

    In his 23 years of law enforcement, Roseville police Lt. Lorne Rosand said, he has never seen anything quite like it. "I see it as a shocking event," Rosand said. "The people whom you should trust, obviously in this specific incident, you can't trust."

    Charges are pending, said Jack Rhodes, chief of staff for the Ramsey County attorney's office.

    He wouldn't comment further Friday evening, as the case continued to unfold.

    Roseville police arrested the four on Wednesday, interviewed them and released them from the Ramsey County Law Enforcement Center.

    Meanwhile, prosecutors are reviewing piles of evidence, which include a wafflemaker, a panini press, sunglasses, watches and framed art.

    The guards' scheme came to light May 30 after a concerned citizen called IPC International Corp., which provides shopping center security for Rosedale Center, and said two male guards were committing late-night thefts and burglaries.

    Chad Potenziani, the regional manager for Illinois-based IPC, called Roseville police. Neither he nor any other spokesman for the firm, which bills itself as a leading provider of shopping center security, would return a reporter's call Friday evening.

    Police soon learned that one of the suspects, a 20-year-old man, had been bragging of stealing from the stores and their storage rooms at the mall. The court documents say he boasted that he would often remove the hinge pins on doors, jimmy locks or scoot around security gates. The documents also say he boasted of how he sometimes joined the 25-year-old guard, who also stole on his own, in the burglaries and thefts.

    A trunk of goods

    Then on Tuesday, another concerned citizen told police that she had seen one of the guards trying to peddle Abercrombie & Fitch clothing and Bath & Body Works products out of the trunk of his car.

    Many of the items were recovered from the apartment one guard shared in Roseville with a roommate.

    And at the Minneapolis apartment of the 20-year-old suspect's girlfriend, the court papers say, were expensive cookware, a convection oven, vegetable choppers, clothing, cologne and dozens more items that had been reported stolen. Much of it was in the original boxes, or had price tags still attached.

    In the Roseville apartment, police say they found burglary tools, nearly $4,700 in cash, bank deposit bags from Abercrombie & Fitch, a sensor-tag removal device and many other items that were believed to have been stolen.

    'Upset by charges'

    "We're very concerned and upset by the charges," said Donald Lantz, senior executive vice president of IPC International. "IPC and the state of Minnesota both have strict hiring criteria in place for security officer applicants, and these individuals met this criteria."

    The guards have been suspended without pay, he said.

    "Our first priority is to provide a safe, secure environment for mall visitors and employees," Lantz said, "and our staff at Rosedale Mall is being reinforced to ensure that service continues."

    Rollin Hunsicker, mall vice president and general manager, called the case troubling. He said the investigation could potentially uncover more guards involved in such activity.

  • #2
    Unfortuntely, whether these individuals are guility or innocent, the fact remains that it gives all of us a bad name and worse yet, while the media reports such things they tend not to report if a person is found innocent later on and thus, images such as this continue to linger on in the minds of society and officials.

    Comment


    • #3
      Note the comment by the VP of IPC to the effect that he was "upset" because the SO's had met their "strict hiring criteria".

      So what if they did? The issue here isn't how or why these guards were hired. The issue here is: Where was the oversight with respect to these guards after they were hired? Supervision here seems to have very clearly been MIA...or was the supervisor taking a cut, perhaps?

      Your responsibility as a company to ensure the integrity of your officers doesn't end with the fact that you performed a pre-employment background check, no matter how thorough. This must be followed up by ongoing, never-ending vigilance with respect to your officers. This is not a matter of cynical suspicion, but the simple recognition that anyone in a position of trust might yield to the unusual opportunities and temptations they have to commit crimes, let alone simply knowing that they're not shirking their duties.

      ...and not just the officers, but the supervisors must be overseen as well. When I was area security manager for an area retail chain some years ago, all store security managers underwent annual polygraphs and their criminal, credit and driving record checks were refreshed...and the area managers also! This process led to several investigations and the recovery of nearly $50,000, I believe, in one of the East Coast regions, but it was dropped a couple of years after I left due to "the expense". If oversight is "too expensive", we might well ask: How costly is an incident like this?
      Last edited by SecTrainer; 06-09-2007, 06:11 AM.
      "Every betrayal begins with trust." - Brian Jacques

      "I can't predict the future, but I know that it'll be very weird." - Anonymous

      "There is nothing new under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 1:9

      "History, with all its volumes vast, hath but one page." - Lord Byron

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by SecTrainer View Post
        Supervision here seems to have very clearly been MIA...or was the supervisor taking a cut, perhaps?
        I know a little bit about who was involved. The 25-year-old suspect was a supervisor, and he was basically the "leader" of all this from what I am told.
        Last edited by davis002; 06-09-2007, 07:03 AM.
        "To win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the highest skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the highest skill." Sun-Tzu

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by davis002 View Post
          I know a little bit about who was involved. The 25-year-old suspect was a supervisor, and he was basically the "leader" of all this from what I am told.
          There goes the neighborhood...
          The guy that shot the Robinsdale cop the other day, yeah, he was a manager at Wolf...Supposedly he hasn't worked for them in 6 weeks. Actually, it's not the first time he stopped working for them.


          http://www.myfoxtwincities.com/myfox...Y&pageId=1.1.1
          Last edited by sgtnewby; 06-09-2007, 08:50 AM.
          Apparently a HUGE cop wannabe...

          Comment


          • #6
            SecTrainer put his finger on the majority of the problems we face in security, effective leadership. We give short shrift to leadership. We are enamored with the concept of "management." We stray to our discomfort when we fail to understand things are managed and people are lead. Quality of leadership, I believe, was best defined by General John J. Pershing when he stated, "A good leader will get service from mediocre soldiers while a poor leader will demoralize the best trained soldiers."
            This is not meant to be a philosophical diatribe. Substitute the word "security officer, guard what have you" for "soldier" and you have the crux of the matter.
            A good leader knows what is going on. The best way for a leader to find out what is going on is to get off his mattress and go into the ranks and find out.
            So many supervisors, leaders, are apple polishers feckless or narcissisist or both. Thus the true mission is not achieved.
            Enjoy the day,
            Bill

            Comment


            • #7
              Here is a link to the article.

              Imagine that, IPC stealing. Try ordering from their "sister" company, Uniformity Inc. That in and of itself is theft at its finest.
              "I am not a hero. I am a silent guardian, a watchful protector"

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by sgtnewby View Post
                There goes the neighborhood...
                The guy that shot the Robinsdale cop the other day, yeah, he was a manager at Wolf...Supposedly he hasn't worked for them in 6 weeks. Actually, it's not the first time he stopped working for them.


                http://www.myfoxtwincities.com/myfox...Y&pageId=1.1.1

                From what I've been told, that shoot may be justified. The cop wasn't a cop to a reasonable person when he was shot, I have been informed, and only became a cop when he called in the fact he'd just taken two rounds to the legs.
                Some Kind of Commando Leader

                "Every time I see another crazy Florida post, I'm glad I don't work there." ~ Minneapolis Security on Florida Security Law

                Comment


                • #9
                  I agree that the officer involved shooting may very well end up being justified. The fact that the cop was in street clothes and a Ford Taurus lends credence to the guy saying that he had no idea he was shooting a cop. The cop is working undercover and they have still not released his name.

                  But, the guy had his wife and two kids in the car and had to lean across his wife to shoot at the cop still sitting in his car. You have to wonder if he could have just driven away.

                  If the cop had a gun pointed at him as he said, why didn't the officer return fire?

                  At the end of the day, road rage doesn't pay for anyone, especially when you have your family in the car or you're undercover.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by sgtnewby View Post
                    There goes the neighborhood...
                    The guy that shot the Robinsdale cop the other day, yeah, he was a manager at Wolf...Supposedly he hasn't worked for them in 6 weeks. Actually, it's not the first time he stopped working for them.


                    http://www.myfoxtwincities.com/myfox...Y&pageId=1.1.1

                    The "suspect" has been released will no charges.

                    Man Who Shot Robbinsdale Police Officer Out of Jail
                    ATTN. SPECOPS AND GECKO45 my secret username is CIDDECEP and I am your S2. My authorization code is Six Wun Quebec Oscar Fife. Your presence here is tactically dangerous and compromises our overall mission parameter. Cease and desist all activity on this board. Our “enemies” are deft at computer hacking and may trace you back to our primary locale. You have forced me to compromise my situation to protect your vulnerable flank. This issue will be addressed later.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Sadly enough the lack of supervision seems pretty common. I carry a gps enabled cell phone. As long as it shows me moving once in while I must be working. I could put it in a elevator and walk off the job and they'd never know.

                      Anyone know if these guys had anything in their background to where they should not have been hired?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The constant lack of proper sceening, training and oversight is a major source of the problems we have in our industry and why our overall immage in the eye of the public and officials alike is extremely poor. But these things will never change so long as security officers across the board do not stand up and demand better.

                        Every day s/o's work in our industry who clearly have no business doing so but are permitted because employers and clients endorce the "warm body" syndrome for cosmetic purposes, financial profiteering agendas and lowering insurance rates. This is not what security is suppose to be about but it is because private employers are permitted to get away with not properly screening, training and regulating their s/o's in the first place, and the good s/o's suffer in the end.

                        I do not believe enough s/o's take our industry, our profession and our duties seriously enough; many profess to know the law but do not; many profess to be something they are not and way too many simply treat the job as just a paycheck rather than having any actual genuine care about what they do; what their badge stands for and the effects their jobs have on others.

                        These are not problems that cannot be fixed, to the contrary. But the road to repair begins first with reshaping our belief systems; standing up for what is right, and not settling for second best in the screening, training and oversight processes.
                        Last edited by Christopherstjo; 06-10-2007, 11:47 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Minneapolis Security View Post
                          The "suspect" has been released will no charges.
                          Doesn't mean he wont be charged at a later date. Same can be said about the Robbinsdale Police Officer.
                          "To win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the highest skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the highest skill." Sun-Tzu

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            It didn't take long! This is from today's Minneapolis paper. How would you like to be the two poor suckers to take these jobs? They will be the most monitored officers, besides mine, in the entire state.

                            Job Title: Security
                            Employer: IPC International Corp
                            Source: Star Tribune Classified Ad
                            Location: Minneapolis, MN
                            Date: 06-10-2007

                            Job Description
                            Description: SECURITY IPC International Corp. has opportunities available at: Rosedale Shopping Center Roseville, MN PUBLIC SAFETY OFFICERS Good communication skills & a strong desire to learn req'd; must speak & write fluent English. HS Diploma/GED, valid DL and clear criminal history req'd. We provide benefits for FT, incl. medical/ dental, 401(k) & ESOP plan. Apply at the Security Office or visit www.ipcinternational.com/opportunities for more information. EOE.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by CorpSec View Post
                              It didn't take long! This is from today's Minneapolis paper. How would you like to be the two poor suckers to take these jobs? They will be the most monitored officers, besides mine, in the entire state.

                              Job Title: Security
                              Employer: IPC International Corp
                              Source: Star Tribune Classified Ad
                              Location: Minneapolis, MN
                              Date: 06-10-2007

                              Job Description
                              Description: SECURITY IPC International Corp. has opportunities available at: Rosedale Shopping Center Roseville, MN PUBLIC SAFETY OFFICERS Good communication skills & a strong desire to learn req'd; must speak & write fluent English. HS Diploma/GED, valid DL and clear criminal history req'd. We provide benefits for FT, incl. medical/ dental, 401(k) & ESOP plan. Apply at the Security Office or visit www.ipcinternational.com/opportunities for more information. EOE.
                              Now that is a prohibited term.

                              326.3384 PROHIBITED ACTS.
                              Subdivision 1. Prohibition. No license holder or employee of a license holder shall, in a
                              manner that implies that the person is an employee or agent of a governmental agency, display on
                              a badge, identification card, emblem, vehicle, uniform, stationery, or in advertising for private
                              detective or protective agent services:
                              (1) the words "public safety," "police," "highway patrol," "state patrol," "sheriff," "trooper,"
                              or "law enforcement"; or
                              (2) the name of a municipality, county, state, or of the United States, or any governmental
                              subdivision thereof.
                              ATTN. SPECOPS AND GECKO45 my secret username is CIDDECEP and I am your S2. My authorization code is Six Wun Quebec Oscar Fife. Your presence here is tactically dangerous and compromises our overall mission parameter. Cease and desist all activity on this board. Our “enemies” are deft at computer hacking and may trace you back to our primary locale. You have forced me to compromise my situation to protect your vulnerable flank. This issue will be addressed later.

                              Comment

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