High-dollar heists on the rise

'Tis the season for high dollar heists and some Mid-South retailers are beefing up security to keep their merchandise and you safe during the holiday rush.

Jim Holloway owns Holloway Furs in Memphis. "We've always had a shoplifting problem," he says, explaining that people will try to walk in and steal thousands of dollars worth of fur coats right off the rack.

Last year, his store was hit after hours, twice. "Busted out the glass, pulled the bars and came in," he described. "They were gone in 2 minutes and 11 seconds." Holloway says they took $83,000 worth of furs.

"Since then, we've added a security door here and the one there that lets down. The security cage was always here. And we added solid steel security in front of the building. And you haven't had any incidents since? Not since," he said.

Pam Drinnon works at Cowgirls, just a few doors down from Holloway Furs. Cowgirls has been burglarized three times, the latest on Sunday. They took thousands of dollars worth of clothes, purses, jewelery, and boots. "They basically take what they can find on the front floor," she said.

Just this week alone, according to Memphis Police reports, shoplifters at Dillard's took nearly $6,000 worth of clothes and furs. At Wal-Mart, a person walked out the door with a flat screen T.V. worth more than $800. At Macy's, a person stole more than $500 dollars worth of clothes.

The Better Business Bureau reports around the holidays, shoplifting occurs every five seconds. Memphis Police spokesman Vince Higgins says many times people who steal these high-priced items turn around and sell them on the streets.


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