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September 5, 2013 SUBSCRIBE

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August same store sales results come in up 3.5% according to 11 retailers Reuters follows  Compared to an estimate of 3.1% and 1.1% sales growth in the year-earlier period. However, excluding drug stores, August same-store sales registered 3% growth vs. the 3.2% estimate and weaker than the 6.5% sales growth in the year-earlier period. Among the many retailers that no longer report monthly sales are Target Corp., Macy’s Inc., Kohl’s Corp., Wal-Mart Stores Inc, Abercrombie & Fitch Co. and American Eagle Outfitters Inc. Back-to-school shopping drives August sales, and sales got off to a slow start. Traffic in stores picked up as the month progressed by purchasing was restrained. Retail Metrics also noted that retailers’ guidance for the third quarter and the full fiscal year has turned overwhelmingly negative. Of 48 retailers, 35 lowered guidance after posting second-quarter results and only four increased guidance. (Source (Source

After all that fighting - Martha Stewart dumped by JC Penney
Penney CEO Mike Ullman decided to do away with Stewart's home-goods line after they didn't sell well, The Post reported. The decision follows a long courtroom battle with Macy's about the partnership with the domestic maven. Now she has a price to pay with Macy's CEO and his trust. (Source

Walmart workers in 15 U.S. cities are expected to protest their employer today
It is expected to be the largest mobilization of the retail workforce since Black Friday. Protests are planned in Cincinnati; Baton Rouge, La.; Boston; Chicago; Dallas; Denver; Los Angeles; Miami, Fla.; Minneapolis, Minn.; New York; Orlando; Sacramento; San Francisco; Seattle; and Washington, D.C. (Source

Safeway reaches $600K settlement with EPA
The government alleges that Safeway neglected to repair leaks of heat-trapping gas HCFC-22 from its refrigerators in a timely manner or keep proper records of refrigerator maintenance. However, in addition to the fine, the retailer will spend an estimated $4.1 million to upgrade equipment in order to reduce its average refrigeration leak rate from 25% to 18% or less by 2015. (Source

Hideaway Pizza installing March Networks video surveillance solution
March Networks, a supplier of intelligent IP video solutions, announced that Hideaway Pizza, a dine-in and takeout restaurant chain in Oklahoma, has selected the company’s next-generation retail solution to enhance security, reduce shrink, and optimize operations. Hideaway Pizza has already started deploying the video surveillance solution. It is using the high-quality video to help improve loss prevention (LP) efforts, as well as increase store performance and profitability. Hideaway Pizza equips each location with as many as 25 cameras, ensuring extensive coverage of its kitchens, cash drawers, bar areas, entrances, exits and parking lots. (Source

Groups seek coordinated fight against $5B annual cargo crime in Ontario, Canada - with Verisk's CargoNet helping to lead the way  How to work together to battle cargo crime will be the main agenda when trucking and law enforcement organizations gather at the Burford Community Centre on Thursday. The Canadian Trucking Alliance, in partnership with the Ontario Trucking Association, Verisk Crime Analytics Canada, CargoNet and various police agencies along the Highway 401 corridor are determined to raise greater awareness about a multi-billion-dollar problem of hijacked cargo that drains the Canadian economy and feeds organized crime syndicates. They've chosen to hold the event in Burford partly because the small community is along the high cargo crime 401-403 corridor, and is home to Jeff Bryan, owner of Jeff Bryan Transport Ltd. of Bishopsgate Road, who is one of the principal organizers, as chairman of the Ontario Trucking Association. The Canadian Trucking Alliance is tracking an expanding crime phenomenon that saps $5 billion from the economy - more than $500,000 a day in the Greater Toronto Area alone - and is most prevalent in the 401 corridor from Windsor to Montreal. (Source

PayPal Forks Out $300 Million for Online Fraud Cases
Online-payment firm PayPal shells out $300 million annually to protect users against fraud, the company’s Asia-Pacific Vice-President said. (Source

'More profitable than cocaine': Peru becomes top source of counterfeit US cash  With its meticulous criminal craftsmen, cheap labor and, by some accounts, less effective law enforcement, Peru has in the past two years overtaken Colombia as the No. 1 source of counterfeit U.S. dollars, says the U.S. Secret Service, protector of the world's most widely traded currency. In response, the service opened a permanent office in Lima last year, only its fourth in Latin America, and has since helped Peru's police arrest 50 people on counterfeiting charges. Over the past decade, $103 million in fake U.S. dollars "made in Peru" have been seized — nearly half since 2010, Peruvian and U.S. officials say. (Source

August Same Store Sales Results

Walgreens up 4.8% - includes 6.4% increase in pharmacy & 2.2% increase in front-end
Costco up 4% with net sales up 7%
Stein Mart up 3.8%
American Apparel up 2% with online sales up 11% with net sales down 1%
Limited Brands up 2% with net sales up 5.8%
Rite Aid up 1.1% - includes 2.5% increase in pharmacy and a 1.7% drop in front-end sales
The Buckle up 1% with net sales up 0.3%
Fred's flat to last year
Cato down 2% with sales down 5%

Quarterly Same Store Sales Results

Conn's Q2 up 18.4% with net sales up 30.3%
Children's Place Q2 down 0.4% with sales up 6% and online sales up 33.2%
JoS A. Bank Q2 down 15.9% with sales down 10.7%





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PROACT Investigators Work With Law Enforcement, Leads to Grand Jury Indictment of an Alleged Shoplifter

The suspect was indicted for allegedly stealing products from local retailers and re-selling them online. The indictment alleges that she stole merchandise from locations in seven different states and sold that product to purchasers across the United States.

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Convicted killer shoots 2 in Visionworks retail store near RiverGate Mall, then shot himself in Madison, Tenn.  The convicted killer walked into the store yesterday afternoon and shot his estranged girlfriend, an employee at the store, and injured another woman before turning the gun on himself yards away. The female employee did have a protective order against the male. Both the suspect and female employee are in critical condition. (Source

Westfield Stratford smash-and-grab: Armed police ambush gang in watch-shop raid throwing stun grenades  Armed police swooped on a smash and grab gang early today as they tried to rob a jeweller’s in Westfield shopping centre in Stratford, London. Flying Squad and armed officers ambushed the gang as they battered through the windows of a shop on the ground floor just after midnight. Five men were arrested after the raid, four were caught in the act while a fifth was arrested later at his home in Islington. Police threw stun grenades to disorientate the gang as they pounced at the Breitling store in the early hours. Late night visitors at the shopping centre fled in panic as the operation unfolded. Officers were lying in wait for the gang after receiving intelligence they were about to strike. Scotland Yard said the arrests followed a “proactive operation” involving the Flying Squad and officers from the SCO19 Specialist Firearms Command. The Flying Squad - nicknamed The Sweeney- have been deployed to target smash and grab raiders after a long running series of raids on luxury stores in the West End. (Source

Belfast flat turned into counterfeit credit card and check factory gets raided
Police seized printing equipment, computers and specialist sandpaper used to erase legitimate owners' names. Prosecution barrister Tessa Kitson said 81 items were seized in the raid, including printers, laptops, memory sticks, bank cards and cheques. "Police would advise that the premises really comprised a factory for making fake cheque books, forged cheques and credit cards," she told the court. Strips of sandpaper were also recovered at that location and in follow-up searches of another nearby property on the Antrim Road. (Source

Toronto man charged in 6 bank, retail robberies
A Toronto man has been arrested and charged with a series of six bank and retail robberies that police say unfolded over a 15-day period. It is alleged that the same suspect robbed four retail stores and in one case assaulted a shopkeeper between Aug. 17th and Sept. 1st. Police allege that the suspect also robbed two banks and claimed to have a handgun. (Source

Cargo worker at Belfast Airport steals a crate of cell phones
An airport worker who stole a crate of mobile phones from a cargo flight at George Best Belfast City Airport has been jailed for six months. Belfast Crown Court heard cargo driver Rodney Shirley, from Oldpark Road, north Belfast, had to load and unload freight from planes as part of his job. The prosecution said that on January 8, a worker at Birmingham airport alerted staff at Belfast that a crate was missing from a consignment. The mobile phones were worth nearly $10,000. The court was told that police were alerted and when officers checked CCTV footage, they saw Shirley unload seven crates when there should have been eight. (Source

5 defendants in armored truck heist linked to Food Lion store robberies  Police have charged men connected to a High Point armored truck robbery in two Food Lion grocery store robberies. Hassan Sharif Ali, 25, Hassan Sheikuna Hassan, 21, Kelvin Paul Jacobs Jr., 24 and John Nathaniel Griffin, 19, have all been charged in connection with robberies in the Greensboro grocery stores. The Food Lion was robbed on July 7, another Food Lion was robbed at gunpoint on July 15, police said. A fifth man held in the July 25 armored truck robbery, Rodney Allen Frazier Jr., 25, also was charged in connection with the second robbery. The men already were in the Guilford County jail on $1 million bonds. (Source

Armed Robbery spree hits Wilmington, North Carolina
Deputies in New Hanover County are investigating a string of armed robberies over the last few weeks. Three Scotchman stores were recently robbed at gunpoint as well as a Hardees and Sprint Store. This morning investigators were on the scene of the most recent robbery of the Scotchman store: the armed suspect fled with an undetermined amount of cash, no one was injured. (Source

Boise woman arrested following a shoplifting spree
Amy Andrews, 19, of Boise was arrested following a day long shoplifting spree where she stole over $600 of merchandise from Kohl’s and four other stores. Employees saw two suspects enter the fitting room with items and come out with nothing, following a search of the fitting room, employees found only tags. One suspect was later apprehended by Police in the parking lot, the second was found at her home with the loot. (Source

Dollar General manager steals $11k from deposits in Louisiana
The manager of a Donaldsonville, La. Dollar General is now in the Ascension Parish Jail after authorities say she admitted to stealing more than $11,000 from deposits since June. On August 30, 2013, deputies were called to the Dollar General in reference to the employee theft. During the investigation, it was learned that there were five deposits missing. According to the Sheriff's Office, 48-year-old Natalie August of St. James admitted to taking cash from the deposits since June, saying she was unable to pay her bills at home. August turned herself in and was booked on a felony theft charge. (Source

Chattanooga Police seeking CVS store burglary suspect  Crime Stoppers and the Chattanooga Police Department are seeking information regarding a burglary that occurred on Aug. 24, at the CVS on 5011 State Street, Chattanooga. Police responded to a burglar alarm at the CVS Pharmacy. Upon arrival, police found the front window knocked into the store. The suspect can be seen in surveillance outside of the building at approximately 12:15 a.m. At 12:20 a.m., he can be seen breaking into the store by using his right shoulder to break out the window. He jumped over the front counter and took some cigarettes. (Source

Two women extradited to Pennsylvania for $5000 PetSmart theft case
Two Connecticut women were in Berks County Prison on Wednesday following extradition from New Jersey on charges they stole merchandise worth more than $5,000 from a Muhlenberg Township pet-supply store. The women were extradited from Bergen County, N.J., where they had been jailed since they were arrested by Mahwah Township police Aug. 19 on a warrant from Muhlenberg police. The suspects had stolen electronic dog collars, animal medicines and other items stolen from a locked showcase in the store. (Source

Kinney Drug Store Manager robbed in store parking lot in Syracuse
Syracuse police are investigating an armed robbery at the Kinney Drugs on Lafayette Road. According to police, the store manager was walking to her car to make a bank deposit. That's when police say a male suspect armed with a gun approached her. He robbed her in the parking lot and then ran off. Police say the store manager wasn't injured during the robbery. (Source

Armed robbery of a Greenville Board Game Shop; dozen customers inside  Greenville Police Department is investigating an armed robbery at Blue Ox Games Store owner Harry Frank tells us, it happened around 9pm. He says a man with a gun robbed the store making a getaway with an unknown amount of money. There were more than a dozen people inside at the time. Frank says the robber took money from the store's customers as well as the register. No shots were fired and no injuries reported. (Source

Super Stop & Shop robbed at gunpoint in Vernon, Connecticut  Police are searching for a man wanted in connection with a strong-arm robbery at a grocery store last month. Police have no released a surveillance photo of the suspect who committed the strong armed robbery at 9:50 p.m. on Aug. 2. (Source

Goodwill store safe stolen in Corpus Christi 
Corpus Christi Police are reviewing surveillance video in hopes of trying to track down someone who broke into the Goodwill store in Annaville. A store manager came into work this morning and found the store's safe was stolen. After reviewing some video, employees found the thief forced their way through the store's front door around midnight. Employees told officers the safe was in a back office not accessible to customers. There's no word yet on what was inside the safe. (Source

Houston Verizon store smash-and-grab thief leaves blood trail behind 
Early Wednesday morning a thief smashed out the front window of a Verizon store in Houston. The suspect grabbed as many cell phones and other items as he could carry, then fled the scene. The suspect cut himself on the glass and left a trail of blood behind him. K-9 units began to track the trail, but the suspect got away because he had a big head start. (Source

Crowley, Louisiana Police are investigating the felony theft of 35 cell phones from Walmart on Saturday 
According to Crowley Police Chief K.P. Gibson, the first suspect, who gained access to the electronics checkout counter, is described as female in her early 20’s. The second suspect served as the lookout, is described as a male in his early 20s. (Source

Former Assistant Manager of Foot Action store in Detroit held on armed robbery charges  Jermaine Passmore, 27 was the Assistant Manager of the Foot Action store in Macomb Mall in Detroit, now he is facing a long time in prison. Passmore and a friend staged an armed robbery of the store back in August, stealing just over $4000 in cash. Once police began speaking to Passmore his story of the robbery events just didn’t match up. Passmore is facing charges of armed robbery and conspiracy to commit armed robbery, if convicted could face life in prison. Passmore claims he gave some of the stolen money to his church. (Source



More on the Middletown, Ohio ORC ring bust - With Denny Dansak, Kroger's Senior Corp. Mgr. of ORC educating the public  Middletown police recently broke up a multi-million dollar, regional shoplifting ring after a six-week investigation that spanned four counties and involved police agencies in 13 different jurisdictions. Police have arrested more than 60 men and women on more than 116 theft charges and other assorted felonies and misdemeanors. Dansak applauded the police agencies saying they “worked extremely well together” to bring down the theft ring. Once operations like this are completed, Dansak said, Kroger typically sees a “sharp decrease” in the number and value of the thefts. But eventually, he admitted, those thieves are replaced. There is a low chance of getting caught and a high reward,” said Dansak, who’s been in his position with Kroger for four years. “They can make a good living.” They need the cash to feed their drug addiction,” he said of the thieves, who steal every day, sometimes three or four times a day. He said the stolen items then are sold to “fences” for pennies on the dollar. Eventually, the items may end up at local flea markets or the Internet, he said. Dansak has toured the flea markets and seen products that he knows were stolen from Kroger, selling for less than 50 percent of the suggested retail price, or less than it costs Kroger to purchase the same product wholesale. He called them “professional thieves” who make their living steals from retail centers throughout the United States. He said one theft ring was caught with more 86,000 pair of Levis and another had skids of baby formula. The items eventually are distributed to “fences” who are doing business in neighboring cities or even states. To combat this, Kroger and other retail stores worked with Middletown police and surrounding agencies. Numerous times the stores gave police product to help them catch “fences” purchasing what they thought was stolen merchandise. (Source

ORC ex-con gets 2 1/2 years in prison and complains to the judge while two of his accomplices get prison too!  Part of a four man ORC gang, the suspect got caught before they could sell the electronics they had stolen from Best Buy last April in Springfield, ILL. After hearing the sentence the suspect said "How can you send me to DOC for retail theft?" Higgins asked Mays. "There are guys (in jail) with greater charges than this who get probation after probation." "This happens sometimes, Mr. Higgins," Mays answered. "I try to look at each case individually." He was found guilty of selling crack cocaine in Sangamon County in 2001 and spent just over seven years in federal prison. He also had one other felony conviction in 1999. He was one of four people who entered the store and left with laptop computers and Beats by Dr. Dre headphones that night. Each of the four suspects allegedly stole one laptop computer. As a group, they collected 14 headphones. The electronics were valued at $6,933.96. The group was in the store for less than three minutes. A store employee and another witness saw a vehicle park next to the front door and leave with the suspects. The vehicle, which had Ohio license plates, was stopped by an Illinois State Police trooper in Pike County, and all the stolen items were recovered. He is the third person in the group to be sent to prison as a result of the incident. Starlette S. Higgins, 24, and Alexia I. Robinson, 22, were each sentenced to two years on retail theft convictions. Willisha S. Brown Joiner, 21, will be sentenced to probation later this month. She was the only person in the party who did not enter the store. Silva Harris, 30, is scheduled to enter a plea on Friday. (Source

Serial Shoplifter Steals Unusual Items From At Least 5 Kohl’s Stores in Ohio  Police say a man is caught on camera serial shoplifting from at least five different locations in one week in July. He is accused of stealing thousands of dollars in unusual items from Kohl’s stores. Police say high-end Dyson vacuum cleaners and Nike sneakers top his list. They say the same man stole from Kohl's stores in Westerville, Pickerington, Hilliard, Grove City and the store on Olentangy River Road. (Source

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LP Manager Sears Landover, MD Sears Holdings Corp
DC Loss Prevention Manager Supply Chain, Distribution & Operations Garland, TX Sears Holdings Corp
AP Manager in Training Walmart Eddystone, PA Wal-Mart
AP Manager in Training Walmart Unicoi, TN Wal-Mart
AP Manager in Training Walmart West Valley City, UT Wal-Mart
Area AP Manager All Facilities Monroe, GA Wal-Mart
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Dept Mgr Store LP & Safety Lowe's Winston-Salem, NC Lowe's
Dept Mgr Store LP & Safety Lowe's Monroe, WA Lowe's
Area LP Manager Lowe's Galesburg, IL Lowe's
Area LP Manager Lowe's Centerville, OH Lowe's
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6 Ways Leaders Can Get Better Results By Not Talking  When praising or showing support to your employees, the worst thing you could do, according to this author, is end that kind remark with "Now here's what you should do next time" or other negating comments. Here are some examples of how to stop talking in a way that encourages your team's growth and opinions. (Don't over-talk!)

How to Manage Someone You Don't Like
Do you have to like everyone on your team? Well, it would make your job a lot easier, but sometimes there's just that one person that drives you crazy. What do you do? Try to see a new perspective into managing someone you don't like by following these steps. (Put on your poker face)

Four Area Where Senior Leaders Should Focus Their Attention  Getting meetings together can be difficult; not only can it be costly but you can be drawn to answering emails instead of the topics at hand. Knowing where to focus the attention at senior leadership meetings is critical, and should be narrowed down to these things. (Discuss future leaders)

7 Leadership Lies You Need to Stop Believing  You can't always believe everything everyone tells you, especially these leadership myths! Take "some people are born leaders" for example: it's a myth because there are skills to being a leader that need to be learned, even if someone is predisposed to lead. (Liar, Liar!)

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A career is like a horse race that starts fresh everyday, every week, every inventory period, every management change and every new employer. Quite frankly it never stops, and you don’t want it to actually. Because if it does then you’re not in the game, and being in the game is what it’s all about. As in every race, some days you win, some days you show, some days you place and some days you just downright lose. The bottom line is learning how to lose with dignity and how to win with humility. But the most important thing is just staying in the game and keeping focused.

Just a Thought,
Gus Downing

Gus Downing

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