CHICO, Calif. -- Chico Police said tremendous progress has been made in its brand new Retail Watch Program. The program aims to reduce shoplifting in Chico.
Chief Mike O'Brien said shoplifting is an epidemic in Chico. Chico PD started the Retail Watch Program 6 months ago, not only to target shoplifters, but to improve communication between store owners and law enforcement.
Chief O'Brien said some businesses in Chico lost anywhere from $200,000 to $300,000 due to shoplifting.
O'Brien asked store owners to do two things, to report and to prosecute.
Action News Now asked the police chief what he thought was the root of the shoplifting problem in Chico.
"Certain laws have been changed as it relates to shoplifting, not in a positive way and I think that has lessened accountability and I think we really need to do something about that, that's a longer-term fix," said O'Brien.
Over the past six months, there have 81 shoplifting arrests, this is 15 more arrests than last year.
Chico PD said Friday, Monday and Wednesday are the most popular day thieves come to stores.
Chief O'Brien said he wants more Chico businesses to participate in the retail watch. Click here to learn more about the program.
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