Baltimore, MD - May 31, 2023 - Giant Food, a grocery store chain with 165 locations in Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, and Washington D.C., is taking protective measures in response to a significant increase in theft and violence, according to FOX45. Measures include limiting store entrances, hiring security guards, reducing the availability of high-cost items, restricting the quantity of items taken to self-checkout stands, and using secure containers for certain items. President Ira Kress stated theft has grown tenfold in five years and violence has increased exponentially, prompting these safety measures. Despite the potential inconvenience to customers, Kress insists these steps are necessary for the business to operate safely and profitably.

This reflects a broader problem in retail. Crime, often organized and occasionally violent, is on the rise in stores across the U.S. For instance, a Home Depot employee was recently killed by a suspected shoplifter, and Target expects inventory shrink due to organized retail crime to impact profitability by $500 million this year. The National Retail Federation reported a 26.5% increase in organized retail crime incidents in 2021. These crime rings tend to target national chains over smaller businesses due to consistent store layouts, which allow for easier replication of thefts at various locations.