Screen capture by Boch via USA Today.
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Imagine retailers, some of whom post “no guns” signage against good guys carrying guns, are now reconsidering their security needs thanks to rampant crime, shoplifting and holdups. Who would have thought that decriminalizing retail theft and other minor crimes would lead to…more crime?

As a result of watching swarms of shoplifters pick their stores clean, some of these businesses are now looking to hire good guys with guns to protect their property, guests, and employees.

The retailers’ moves follow the age-old truism that when the going gets tough, everyone wants good guy gun owners on their side.

Forbes has the story, via MSN . . .

Faced with rising theft and violence — and pressure from scared employees — grocery stores and other retailers are bulking up on armed security.

One Saturday night in April, thieves entered a Gristedes grocery store on Manhattan’s tony Upper East Side and bound two employees with zip ties at gunpoint before making off with thousands of dollars in stolen goods. It was just the latest brazen incident the grocery chain has faced recently, with thieves now regularly stealing meat, Häagen-Dazs ice cream, Tide laundry detergent and Dove body soap from the aisles every week.

In response, billionaire owner John Catsimatidis bulked up security, hiring brawny former police officers carrying guns to be stationed at each of his 30 Gristedes and D’Agostino’s stores, incurring costs that he’ll either absorb or pass along to shoppers in the form of higher prices.

“It has become open season on stores,” Catsimatidis told Forbes. “We want to have the reputation that if you steal from us or harm our employees, there will be hell to pay. Go steal someplace else.”

While a national debate rages over whether armed guards should be stationed at public places like schools, retailers around the country are beefing up armed security presence in stores, mostly using ex-police and military. Since July 2021, there’s been a 108% increase in demand for armed guards at grocery stores, according to Allied Universal, one of the world’s largest security staffing firms, which works with many of the nation’s biggest retailers and shopping malls.

We covered HyVee grocery stores bringing on armed security officers earlier this year.

Hy-Vee’s armed security looks professional and much like cops, as opposed to half-baked security guards that look like they just finished a 12-hour shift at McDonalds before coming to work at their second gig.

Store employees, generally instructed not to physically confront a thief for their own safety, are beginning to ask for more backup. In Colorado, union members are pushing for armed guards at Albertson’s and Kroger locations. Some Starbucks workers have also been requesting security officers. Best Buy CEO Corie Barry commented last year that rising theft at its stores could make it more difficult to hire and retain workers.

Can you blame them? Anyone with half a brain wouldn’t risk their personal safety to attempt to apprehend a potentially violent individual for $10 an hour and no insurance.  Especially in states where retail theft has been legislated down to a petty offense and a trivial fine. If that.

I’ll double down to say as a shopper, if I see a shoplifter, I might contact management.  What’s more, I’m not getting involved unless an innocent person is about to get a knife plunged into their chest. And that’s if I’m still around. If I have my toddlers, I’m going in the other direction with a quickness.

But yes, it does feel more than a little hypocritical that some of these same businesses that are now hiring people with guns are the same that eschewed law-abiding good guys who carry them. Oh, the irony.

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    • A few weeks ago, I personally witnessed a group of yutes (white teenage yutes from my local white neighborhood, so color doesn’t matter) scoop up armfuls of snacks and drinks and calmly walk right past the registers and out the door. When I gave them the “look” to let them know I was watching them, they all laughed, and one brazenly flipped me off. I followed them to their car (they were young, but at least one of them had to be 16 to have a driver license and vehicle in CA), taking video with my phone while they continued to laugh and flip me off more.

      Why so confident of themselves? Because at a young age, they already knew the game.

      I went back in to the store, found the manager, showed him the video of the theft, the items they took, their faces, and the LPN of the vehicle they left in. He simply shrugged his shoulders and said it wasn’t worth his time over maybe $100 worth of food. I told him maybe it isn’t so much the food that’s important, but getting these teenagers to learn a solid life lesson early so they might avoid becoming more dangerous thieves in the future. He still didn’t care.

      • I had this talk with my wife the other day. First off if they’re teen agers they are pretty much past hope. Parents these days are not telling their kids ‘no’. The first time anybody restricts their actions is generally the age group you saw and it is the police doing it. At that point they are in the system and they are done.

        I live in a very diverse and mixed neighborhood. A lot of Asians and Indians. By far the most trouble from the teens is the white kids. By a large margin. They act entitled. No respect at all for their elders or authority.

        Their parents did not raise them. They let video games and the internet raise them and it is just too late by the time they’re teens.

        • My son must be one of the exceptions. I told him NO many times and he ended up in the “sad chair” where he had to stay. It didn’t take long for the message to sink in. if you’re good, good things happen. When you’re bad, bad things happen.

          Later he would willingly sit in that same chair for hours while we played computer games together on LAN.

          He understands consequences and knows things he does today could affect him for the rest of his life.

          I’m proud of my son and I think I’ve raised him right.

      • There is nothing wrong with stealing in California. That is the reality in the former golden state. That is the real world view there. Prop 47 made it that way. The Voters didn’t read the fine print. But they did get recreational pot made legal.

        • Stealing in CA eliminates the middle man. instead of the government confiscating property and redistributing it to the more worthy, the good people can go get it themselves directly from the evil business.

      • Parents need to be held liable. They are failing themselves, their offspring, and the community by raising Defective Citizens. The next time those snack thieves come back, they will be after the cash in the register and the beer in the cooler, and have guns in their hands…..gangsta style.

  1. Hy-Vee is hands down the best supermarket chain I’ve shopped at in the past two decades.

    Employee owned, and they care.

    It’s nice they have security, but I’m my own security while out shopping.

    Never seen an anti-2A/Gun Free Zone sign at any Hy-Vee I’ve entered.

      • So true. The security is little more then glorified hall monitors to make the sheeple ‘feel’ safe. I’m OK with that.

        A PPQ45 and P7M13 are my private security detail.

        • I carry a PPQ 45. A great gun and not much bigger than the PPQ 9. Seems that Walther did not really agressively market the 45 and I do not understand why.

        • I’m sure you’re much more qualified than they are.

        • avatar Geoff "A day without an obsessed, obviously brain-damaged and mentally-ill demented troll (who deserves to live in New Jersey) PR

          “…much more qualified than they are.”

          More qualified than a frightened little boy with nothing between his spindly-legs, that’s for sure, PeeGeee2.

          What a loser you still are!!! 😉 🤣 🤣 🤣

        • Hard fact little troll 🤡, nobody has more on the line then the person ACTUALLY facing the threat.

          It’s all about skin in the game loser. Your ‘gunslinger’ 🤡 comment is a moot point.

        • The people paid to ACTUALLY face and stop the threat, when you can run away, have a lot of skin in the game. The fact that you demean them when you know nothing about them or their training while acting like a tough guy makes it a very valid point.

          You are right about it being wrong to call you a gunslinger, a gunslinger actually knows something about slinging guns rather than bullshit.

        • “The people paid to ACTUALLY face and stop the threat, when you can run away, have a lot of skin in the game.”

          Really? Google Uvalde, or Parkland.

          “The fact that you demean them when you know nothing about them or their training while acting like a tough guy makes it a very valid point.”

          I know most LEOs fire under 500 rds a year to maintain a classification of ‘profecient’. What do you think the training requirements are for supermarket security?

          “You are right about it being wrong to call you a gunslinger, a gunslinger actually knows something about slinging guns rather than bullshit.”

          Troll harder moronic 🤡.

        • Jesse jerkoff James is on duty, slinger of bullshit and the superior choice for supermarket security. Shoplifters of bubblegum beware!

          Thank God every supermarket you patrol will now be safe.

        • Never made ANY comment that inferred I was the store security.
          My statement pointed to the FACT that I’m MY OWN security.
          Work on your reading comprehension moron.

        • You’re right, I apologize, I didn’t realize what a hero you are. You being a one man security detail, you are truly a gift to humanity.

          And you can read too. What a stud.

        • Wow, still issues with the total lack of reading comprehension.

          “A PPQ45 and P7M13 are my private security detail.”

          See the world ‘my’ in that statement?
          That limit the entirety of the statement to me, and NOBODY ELSE.

          Enjoy those reading disabilities loser. 👍

    • Cato, like I said some time ago: I got you pegged dude. Trolls can’t hide, no matter how hard or how long they try. You ain’t fooling nobody. Well, maybe one or two. Run along and play now before mommy takes her laptop back and puts you back downstairs. Again. Still.

      • “Cato, like I said some time ago: I got you pegged dude…..”

        I wouldn’t be so quick with that moniker.

        Cato writes/comments like a passive aggressive Karen.
        The twisting of basic content/words/syntax is a dead giveaway.
        It wouldn’t surprise me in the least if Cato is ACTUALLY some progtarded demanding mommy, busy raising a professional basement dweller with six figure of student loan debt.

        • Could be… my vote is we have but one single troll in our echochamber midst. Freud would be all over this.

  2. It’s not my job to pull over reckless drivers, stop shoplifters or interfere in domestic altercations, but I sure will report them. None of us want see criminals doing criminal things and having a negative effect on our lives. As John Boch points out, there are no consequences for the criminal activity, so we all have to decide if it is worth the risk to intervene. Bottom line; retailers are on their own.

  3. Okay. But can they do anything?
    A big reason this ransacking in on the rise is municipalities that effectively legalized theft if under a certain dollar amount. What good is hi-viz Judge Dredd if he can’t touch you?

  4. How many of THESE same retailers forced employees to take the Covid shots against their will? How many continue to sponsor and advocate for the same people and policies that created this mess? How many refuse to hire vets? How many would support Kyle Rittenhouse?

    • Re shots: a year ago damn near everywhere now if it is asked about at all it’s because it’s a medical facility and still has to. Otherwise only hear about it for attending school and university…..oh and oddball NYC events and businesses and their emulators up here.

  5. As far as I am concerned, any retailer that excludes law-abiding armed people has said “we do not want your business”, and I respect their wishes by not giving them a penny. If they have later on discovered that their support for the mindset that causes them to exclude me has the side-effect of having their stores robbed and looted, you’ll forgive me if I can’t find it within myself to have any amount of sympathy for them. They made their bed, they can lie in it.

  6. all retailers affected, large and small, should think about contributing to the da’s that oppose the soros backed candidates.

  7. They aren’t exactly supporting the 2A by hiring security. That’s still an only these guys should have guns approach

    • You seem to be one of the very few commenters who are on-point.

      What is this “No guns” policy that some stores might post.

      It’s their property, so I get that they have some proprietary rights.
      But, usually, it’s a place of public accommodation. Since the Civil Rights Movement era we Americans have cultivated something of an acknowledgement of a right to be served in a public accommodation. We may not know precisely what that right to be served is, but somethings are off-the-table.

      What if a store refused to serve 18-year-olds whose names appeared on the registered voter rolls? Or women? Or transgendered people? Or, NRA members?

      OK, so the proprietor doesn’t want guns on his premises. But Brinks delivers his rolled-coin and picks up his bank deposits. The Brinks drivers are not the employees of the proprietor. The proprietor is making an exception to his No-Guns policy for the Brinks driver.

      Now what of the proprietor’s own employees? He is making an exception for his own employees. Does this strike us as something like hypocrisy? The proprietor wants to appease his hoplophobe customers with his No-Guns policy but he lets some Rent-a-Guard carry a gun to protect his property?

      Shouldn’t we at least point out to the hoplophobes that George’s Green-Grocery’s No-Guns policy doesn’t mean much when there are armed guards in the store. Shouldn’t they wonder about their safety with armed guards in the store? Why shouldn’t they worry about those guards? Why should they worry about a mom who carries concealed to protect her kids?

  8. The company I work for on the weekends has a “no guns” policy buried deep in the employee manual. There are no signs on the doors.

    I carry anyway, and some of the management team probably knows it. If they raised a stink about it, I’d give them a choice — ignore me carrying, or fire me. I can always get another part time gig to keep myself busy, but I can’t get a new life.

    • Been my experience that the “employee handbooks” are written by people who have absolutely no contact with the store, store management, employees, and or the state in which the store resides.

      Not real surprised they dont mind.

      It exists so that if they ever wanted to fire you, they have grounds. Also, so they can claim you had your firearm without their permission should you use it and a lawsuit happens. That last one wouldn’t likely protect them, but its there just the same.

      • “Employee Handbooks” are written by people and approved by people who don’t work in the stores or ever work with the public directly. Yeah, they may take a phone call, email, but never do they interact physically with the public. All the while claiming they know what’s best for the employees on the front lines.

    • Truth. I cannot get a permit based on my zip code. I carry anyway. It’s a lot easier to recover from being caught by a cop for carrying than to recover from a thug catching me without.

  9. So, what happens to one of these guards when he/she shoots a shop lifter DRT. Murder one? Murder two. It is nothing but theatre.

    • James8,

      My hunch is that 99.9999999% of these new armed guards will only shoot if a spree-killer or maybe an armed robber enter their store/business.

    • A guard may use force, if needed, to apprehend a shoplifter but it cannot be deadly force. That changes if the shoplifter resists with deadly force. The crime escalates from shoplifting to armed robbery, aggravated battery or attempted murder. Then, the guard may use deadly force in self defense. That doesn’t mean that the criminal’s friends and family won’t whine or that a criminal friendly DA won’t prosecute.

      Nebraska Furniture Mart is (they claim) the biggest home furnishings, electronics, etc. dealer in the country with stores in several cities. They are very hard on shoplifters. One of their guards chased a fleeing shoplifter across the parking lot and took him to the pavement. NFM used to post No Guns signs which have the force of law in Nebraska. They took them down.

  10. Best overall policy would be to have these hired guys, visible and at least a little intimidating, AND signage encouraging those who carry everywhere already to also carry inside their places.

    I learned long ago that 99% of the stupid signs on the doors are not government complaint, thus are utterly meaningless. So I walk past them like they are not even there.. because they are not per the laws of most states.

    Make it known that armed citizens ARE welcome inside, and thanks for the extra security brought by your presence here.

    • Yep even more wild Midwest in ILLannoy. Insuring a horde of new legal gat owners. In my burb they’re a whole lot meaner to thieves n lowlife scum than they were during the BlackLootersMurder kerfuffle…

      • We haven’t had enough wealthy/LGBT/upperclass victims of our various criminal justice reforms to have that be an acceptable viewpoint for public discourse. With that said saw a few daytime robberies in wealthy sections of Albany and the surrounding suburbs so give it a while for us to catch up as we are a bit slow with common sense.

        • Safe, comments went wonky the other day but you asked about prisms under $600 so I’ll re-reply: only experience I have at that level is my Bushnell (yeah, I know) Lil’ P Prism on a TNW carbine in soul destroying .45acp. Ridiculously tiny with only 2″-2.005″ eye relief so can’t use it on anything else non ARish but watched a guy try to kill one with a frozen bottle of water, with prejudice, and it survived. Had to return mine due to a poorly fit diopter but I had a new one in hand before I even sent mine back, so all good. Not really daylight bright but a retched eticle doesn’t really have to be. I like it, weighs nothing, $450ca. Primary Arms has good looking new 1x SLx Prisms, $310ca, along with matching 3x SLx magnifiers, $300ca and I just ordered their 2x GLx Prism, $550ca. They have other older models of 3x and 5x as does Vortex and Burris. Definitely check out the Primary Arms offerings though. Cheers.

        • It takes rich people getting robbed and killed, to finally wake them out of their liberal utopian day dream. Since most supported letting criminals out early. (white liberal guilt) I’m glad it’s happening them. Not just the poor. Who are always the normal victims?

  11. My impression, from such snatch and grabs in LA and San Francisco, that the security will do nothing to stop these people, but simply allow them to walk on out of the store, even when clear felonies (goods worth thousands of dollars) are being stolen. So what is the applicable law–can they detain suspects? Will the police come if called to take a perp into custody? These guards are not LEO and only have the power of citizen’s arrest, afaik, and can only use their firearms in self-defense but not to arrest.What is the point?

  12. We would be wise to recognize that there are two camps within the Civilian Disarmament Industrial Complex.

    Members of the first camp are modern-day versions of 1960s “flower children” who truly believe that private firearm ownership is the only thing standing between our current situation and a world of unicorns and rainbows. Therefore we must eliminate private firearm ownership.

    Members of the second camp are elitists who recognize that the human condition will always have violent/evil elements and thus want THEIR designated people (and ONLY their designated people) to have firearms. Therefore we must eliminate private firearm ownership.

    This latest development (retail businesses considering armed security) is simply an example of the second camp in the Civilian Disarmament Industrial Complex. Our “betters” still want to eliminate PRIVATE firearm ownership. Do NOT mistake this trend as somehow signaling that the populace at large are warming up to private firearm ownership.

    • Extremely well said.
      These businesses are no different from the politicians and celebrities who demand gun prohibition for ordinary citizens while they hire former military and police as armed guards to protect themselves. Screw all of them, especially the armed guards.

    • Mr Sense, I agree. This may(may not shall) be considered a step, baby step, in the right direction but is the step being taken while facing forward or backwards! The question is, are they genuinely sincere?

  13. Watching the first news clip about those people walking out the door with $28,000 worth of merchandise.
    No One Was Hurt
    They couldn’t sale the over priced shit anyway (insurance)
    Keep them Chinese employed making more clothes.
    So thieving is good for the country.

    • Didn’t one of the Kalifornia Democrats make a video on “in defense of looting”?

      You seriously can’t make this stuff up.

      I’ll bet she’s all for it EXCEPT when it comes to HER stuff.

  14. My co-worker was murdered at work in our parking lot. It was the night shift. I was off that day. This happened back in march of this year. My boss made a request to get city and county cops to be stationed at our store. There was at least one LEO car in our parking lot 24/7. Now those uniformed LEO’s are gone. Their stay ended in August. The company installed more outside cameras and more parking lot lights.

    Two weeks before my co-workers was shot and killed. There was a gun fight across the street at a waffle house. I was working that night. But I was away at lunch when the gunfight happened. I took pictures. I counted about 70 or 80 of those bullet case markers, the police use to mark where the gun fire had happened.

    You will still get fired if caught with a gun. But it does seem that a uniformed person with a gun is now back in the good graces of management.


    Necessity is the mother of invention, right? The cops can’t or won’t do the job they have always done, it’s time for someone to step up and do the job.

    I really want to start reading stories about feral gangsters meeting their demise in drug stores, grocery stores, big box stores, jewelry stores, pawn shops, and more. The more that die, the more law-abiding the remaining population will become. In filthy cities like Gay Francisco, maybe they’ll just leave the dead gangstas lying on the sidewalk to decompose, while serving as a warning to the next animal targeting the store. Can we re-invent the gibbet?

  16. SO now it’s shooting dead SHOPLIFTERS is it? Only in America. As far as I know shop security have pretty much always openly carried – so what’s new. AS I understand the law if you are NOT threatened with a deadly weapon to use one youself is unlawful and wILL result in some seriou shit for you- licensed Security or not.
    In the UK all Security Staff have to have a government recognised NVQ-National Vocational Qualification Certification and display ID if required to do so. An NVQ can go right up to DEGREE LEVEL – known as a NVQ 5 or 6whish would indicate Middel[Senior Management . MY son as an ex-Officer in the UK Forces would automatically have qualified as 5 or 6 after passing a relevant course.
    In fact when he left the services in ’99 he was offered such a position in a well know Private Security Organisation with an International reputation.

  17. Years ago I use to work at a place we would hear gunfire during the day on occasion. I never asked permission or discussed it with management, but an untucked polo shirt as business casual neatly covered the 1911 that I used to carry in those days. Small business doesn’t usually have huge binders listing all the stuff you can and can’t do, unlike when I started at IBM and they handed me a huge 3 ring binder of thou shalt nots (which I never read).


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