NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — The holiday shopping season is about to kick off, but organized retail crime is already in full swing.
Now, the district attorney’s office is working on their plans to prosecute suspects involved in aggressive retails thefts from The Mall at Green Hills.
“Anytime that’s concerning when some use of force is being used from what you would take as a shoplifting incident to a potential robbery or an incident where somebody could get hurt,” said Assistant District Attorney Will Griffith.
Multiple shocking and even violent thefts at Louis Vuitton, Gucci, and Nordstrom at the Mall at Green Hills over the last month is prompting swift action from officials in the district attorney’s office.
In the three separate incidents, thieves made off with a combined $100,000 in stolen merchandise. The bandits even used bear spray, a noticeable trend to authorities compared with previous cases of snatch and grabs.
As the intensity of the crime increases when elements of force, like assault and bear spray are used, so do the potential charges the DA’s office can bring up against the suspects.
“It appears they’re kind of picking up an aggression to avoid being apprehended at the scene,” said Griffith. “Then we have to look at it more through a different lens of is it simply a theft, an assault, or has this become a robbery?”
Officials with the district attorney’s office meets monthly with mall officials and local police to discuss incidents at the mall so everyone stays informed. News 2 reached out to the Mall at Green Hills for comment on what security measures they are taking.
The newly released statement from the general manager reads in part:
“There is nothing more important than the safety and security of our customers and employees. While we will not share the specific details regarding our security program, in light of recent incidents, both police and mall security are providing additional patrols and have a stronger presence inside and outside of the mall. We are confident that due to our partnership with police, and the information we are able to provide, we will enable criminals to be brought to justice.”
“These are felony level offenses so when they first get arrested, what these warrants are going to do, they’re going to come to the general sessions level. We will not make any deals at that point in time,” said Griffith.