A woman gets caught shoplifting from a downtown Chico store Sunday night and Action News Now was there when it happened. But this story goes beyond someone stealing from a store. Local business owners say this is another example of a much bigger problem: the possible demise of downtown Chico.
The alleged crime happened at Urban Laundry on Main Street and it was all caught on camera.
There is video of the shoplifter leaving the store where an employee follows her outside and a confrontation later ensures.
“The Good Samaritans kind of heard the confrontation,” said Urban Laundry owner Cory Campos as he plays surveillance footage. “And as they told her to stop she swung at the woman.”
The woman ultimately returns a pair of stolen gloves and takes off; leaving behind her bike and bags. Inside one of the bags, Chico Police discover a syringe and a spoon with what looks like drug residue.
“It’s pretty dangerous,” Campos said. “To hand my employee a bag that has a syringe in it it’s just crazy! We don't need that downtown. I don't want it in my store.”
Campos said this incident is another example of the various problems downtown businesses are dealing with. It’s a problem he wants cleaned up now.
“We need an answer and we need it soon,” he said. “It’s getting out of control. I mean everyday there’s huge incidents downtown and I consider this a pretty big one.”
Campos wants to press charges against the shoplifter. When Action News Now checked with Chico Police, there was not an arrest log for the crime.