Attorney General Coleman Convenes Roundtable Discussion on Reality of Retail Crime

Kentucky Attorney General Coleman Convenes Roundtable Discussion on Reality of Retail Crime

FRANKFORT, KY (March 16, 2024) – Attorney General Russell Coleman convened a roundtable discussion earlier this week on the reality of retail crime in Kentucky. The panel included the members of the Kentucky Retail Federation, County and Commonwealth's Attorneys and local, state and federal law enforcement.

At the event, General Coleman highlighted the serious threats shoppers, retailers and employees face amid rampant theft.

"I am proud to be part of this effort not just as Attorney General, but as a dad who wants my family to be able to shop without fearing for their safety," said Attorney General Coleman. "The volume of 21st century major retail crime feels like lawlessness, and we can't accept turning a blind eye."

In 2020, American retailers lost more potential revenue to retail theft than ever before. Nearly nine out of 10 retailers say these criminals are getting more aggressive and more violent. Several big box retailers have closed stores because theft and violence made them too dangerous to run. And recent shoplifting data suggests that it's a surging problem with no end in sight.

"Across the Commonwealth, organized crime continues to be a challenge facing retailers. We know the impact is significant, costing tens of billions of dollars a year," said Kentucky Retail Federation Board Chair and Target District Senior Director Travis Farmer. "I appreciate Attorney General Coleman convening the first of many discussions to combat the rampant shoplifting problem."

"These criminals don't recognize county or city lines, and neither should we," said Chief Jeremy Thompson of the Elizabethtown Police Department. "Law enforcement, prosecutors and retailers large and small across the state and the country need to work together to deter this crime. It's great to see that leaders like Attorney General Coleman are paying attention to this real issue."

"I want to thank Attorney General Russell Coleman for taking steps to recognize that retail theft is no petty crime but something that has a real economic impact on our communities and hurts our small business owners," Sen. Jimmy Higdon, R-Lebanon, said. "As a former grocery store owner, I know how detrimental theft can be to a small business owner's bottom line. One way to deter retail thieves is tough on crime laws to deter shoplifters and organized crime rings. This discussion will serve to bring stakeholders to the table and I trust that together we can identify other measures to address this problem."

"We may not have the same resources as the big box stores, but we feel the same straining impacts of retail crime," said Rob McGlone, Loss Prevention Manager for Newcomb Oil in Bardstown. "I look forward to continuing this conversation about protecting our workers, customers and the communities we serve." 





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