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Holiday Season Brings 'Slight Increase' in Robinson Shoplifting

During the holiday season, Robinson Police receive more reports of retail thefts, minor car crashes and thefts from vehicles, police chief says.

Robinson Police Chief Dale Vietmieir said the holiday season can bring about an uptick in shoplifting complaints from the community's busy retail centers. 

Crowds bustling through the township's commercial hubs—including the Mall at Robinson, Settlers Ridge and the Robinson Town Centre—can translate into a higher number of arrests for shoplifting, he said. 

One Pittsburgh man—31-year-old Matthew Johns of McMurray—was charged this week with swiping more than $400 in perfumes from Ulta in Settlers Ridge, according to police records.  

"We do see an increase in retail thefts," Vietmieir said. "A slight increase, it's not huge. What we see more of is more car break-ins. People leaving things like gifts in their cars and having them stolen." 

On Black Friday, police in the community were hired by managers at the Mall at Robinson  to serve as a deterrent against theft.

"I believe it's very affective to have that police visibility outside of a store or have a car parked outside," Vietmieir said. No one was charged with retail theft in Robinson on Black Friday, when shoppers packed the community retailers for post-Thanksgiving Day deals.

He said the department receives on average one complaint of retail theft per day. The Christmas shopping season can also mean a higher number of minor car crashes, as shoppers crowd the township's retail corridor, Vietmieir said. 

"It does vary," he said. "There is an increase in shoplifting during this time of year. But we have a high number of retail thefts on average." 

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