Manhattan's trendiest and most tourist-packed neighborhoods have been rocked by a wave of crime, leaving shop owners and workers shocked and terrified, the New York Post reported Sunday.
According to the Post, New York Police Department stats comparing data from 2022 to 2021 indicate grand thefts in Manhattan of property valued at $1,000 or more have increased by over 60%. The dramatic rise has left shop owners blaming the city's lax bail laws, which allow suspects, sometimes immediately, back on the streets.
Jim Giddon, whose men's clothing store was robbed twice in one week by the same gang, said, "There's a true belief out there among criminals that they're going to get away with it."
Grand theft in New York City has gotten so bad that roughly two weeks ago, Mayor Eric Adams held a "summit" with business leaders to discuss the spike in retail thefts. But sources say the city's new mayor left after attending for only 20 minutes.
"That doesn't sound much like a summit," Giddon said, commenting on the matter.
In the 13th Precinct, where Giddon's store resides, grand theft increased by 25.4%, or to 998 incidents from 796.
NYPD data shows that in the Sixth Precinct, home of Greenwich Village, grand theft jumped 57.3%, from 853 incidents to 1,340.
Last week, Adams admitted that "grand larcenies are killing our [crime] stats in the city."
For Giddon, "the politicians who hurried and created a bail law, which was well-intentioned, need to really go back to school and figure out how to make it more reasonable."
According to The Wall Street Journal, in 2021 shoplifting contributed to a $94.5 billion loss for American retailers.
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