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DAs, retailers say California needs tougher retail theft law

Combating Retail Theft
Posted at 7:26 AM, Dec 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-04 10:26:19-05

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Prosecutors and retailers are pushing back on assertions by California’s governor and attorney general that they have enough tools to combat shoplifting and other retail thefts.

California Retailers Association President Rachel Michelin says recent large-scale thefts in which groups of individuals steal in plain sight or smash and grab from display cases raise it to a whole new level.

California is hardly alone, with similar problems elsewhere in the country.

California critics point to a 7-year-old ballot measure that reduced certain theft and drug possession offenses from felonies to misdemeanors. But Attorney General Rob Bonta used existing laws to get pleas in one of the state's biggest retail theft busts announced Friday.