Walgreens announced Tuesday the closure of five more stores in San Francisco due to the surge of shoplifting that has plagued the city, Fox Business reported.
“Due to ongoing organized retail crime, we have made the difficult decision to close five stores across San Francisco,” a Walgreens spokesperson told Fox Business. “Each store will transfer prescriptions to a nearby Walgreens location within a mile radius and we expect to place the stores’ team members in other nearby locations.”
I am completely devastated by this news – this Walgreens is less than a mile from seven schools and has been a staple for seniors, families and children for decades. This closure will significantly impact this community.
— Ahsha Safai 安世輝 (@Ahsha_Safai) October 12, 2021
Retailers in San Francisco have previously sounded the alarm over an organized crime scheme that stole millions worth of their products to later flip them online.
Apart from closing down the increased number of locations across the city, Walgreens has also ramped up its investment into security measures in San Francisco stores, bringing it to “46 times our chain average,” the spokesperson added.
A June 2021 video showed a man brazenly stealing a bag full of items from a San Francisco Walgreens as two people and a security guard helplessly watched him commit the crime, then hop on a bike and ride away. (RELATED: Watch Two Crooks Casually Walk Out Of Los Angeles Store With Bags Filled With Stolen Goods)
A 2014 California law reduced the theft of less than $950 worth of goods from a felony to a misdemeanor. A number of experts have criticized the law for enabling the spike in shoplifting during the pandemic, according to Fox Business.