California is seeing an increase in theft and a decrease in arrests, and law enforcement officials attribute the trend to a law that raised the felony threshold for the crime, according to KMAX-TV.
Proposition 47, which passed in 2014, raised the amount a suspect could steal before being charged with a felony from $450 to $950. As a result, criminals are committing “organized retail theft” to take advantage.
Police told KMAX that criminals are targeting retail stores in groups, rushing into stores to grab as much merchandise as they can, and escaping; they typically choose stores with easy access to getaway cars and major freeways. They know it is not often worth it for police to risk a high-speed chase for a misdemeanor offense.
Vacaville is particularly susceptible to this organized theft trend, since it contains numerous stores and shopping centers near major highways. In the past year, there have been 746 retail thefts in Vacaville, and less than half of the suspects get away with the crimes. – READ MORE