Los Angeles holds the unfortunate title of being the number one city for retail theft in the US. Employing armed security can effectively counteract theft and serve as a deterrent through a proactive approach.

For store owners or managers, investing in highly trained security staff puts them in a much stronger position compared to those relying solely on cameras or unarmed security guards. While some business owners may harbor concerns about potential liability arising from the use of force or deadly force incidents involving armed guards, conducting an isolated search on any major retailer, such as Target or Ross, reveals that these establishments suffer losses amounting to millions or even billions due to robberies and thefts. The resultant increase in costs often leads to store closures, highlighting the imperative for businesses to consider the tangible benefits of hiring armed security despite initial reservations.

What’s fueling the crime waves?

Part of the problem is that California is a no-bail state, meaning that even when criminals are taken into custody, they are quickly released back into society, enabling them to commit more thefts and other crimes promptly.

Another issue stems from Prop 47, a pro-criminal law. Prop 47 dictates that thefts under $950 will not result in an arrest; instead, the offender receives a ticket and is unlikely to face prosecution by the city. This hinders police officers, demotivating them as they grapple with senseless legislation that supports criminals. Many offenders exploit Prop 47 by stealing from multiple stores, ensuring each incident remains under the $950 threshold, allowing them to continue without facing real consequences.

Criminals are thus empowered by laws that favor them. The LA District Attorney’s pro-criminal stance results in a reluctance to prosecute these crimes. For instance, out of a thousand criminal cases, less than half might progress to prosecution. Even in felony cases, the District Attorney often opts for plea bargains, reducing the charges to misdemeanors and allowing criminals to return to the streets quickly, unimpeded.

Prop 57 exacerbates the situation by allowing criminals to leave jail sooner for good behavior, but it fails to prevent them from reoffending upon release. Many criminals exploit this law, leveraging it for a swift release and subsequent recommitment of crimes.

The pro-criminal stance of California politicians, exemplified by Governor Gavin Newsom’s release of 175,000 criminals during COVID, has had a profound impact on the daily lives of citizens. Fear of public outings is pervasive, and business owners suffer significant losses. 

Police response times have also slowed, as officers are no longer supported by laws or public sentiment. The current incentive structure encourages them to wait until a crime concludes before responding and arriving at the scene.

Armed Private Security is the Answer

Many business owners feel helpless in this current situation and do not know what to do to prevent more thefts. The answer is simple: high-level armed security. These highly trained officers and agents can be deterrents, provide store patrols, observe, and respond quickly.

Through hundreds of hours of specialized training, armed security officers have instincts that will ensure crime is deterred and prevented. They also take a proactive and preventative approach and do not simply react to crimes but actively work to avoid them. There is a huge difference between police and private security.

Los Angeles needs more security to work directly with the Police and Sheriff Departments, and action needs to be taken. Politicians are not going to do anything to stop criminals. Instead, the people of Los Angeles need to take security and protection seriously and choose to invest in private armed security. And because armed security will also carry batons, handcuffs, and pepper spray, owners do not need to worry about a high-risk factor around deadly force. The security agent will do everything else before using their firearm, decreasing the client’s chance of being liable in a civil suit.

This makes private security the best and most effective answer, especially in places like Los Angeles and other urban centers where crime increases yearly. Not only will profit stay with the store, but the employees and customers will also feel safer and secure.

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