Safe Retail | NRA

The following trends in retail crime have been witnessed by Brisbane retailers over the past few weeks, as relayed across the NRA SafeCity Network.

Thank you to all of the retailers reporting these crimes and trends.
The more we all report, the more we all know.

Products being targeted

  • Alcoholic Spirits
  • Pre-mix alcohol
  • Fragrances (Perfume)
  • I-gear products (phone chargers)
  • Skin Care products
  • Handbags
  • Vitamins
  • Beauty products
  • Magazines
  • Chocolate
  • Lollies
  • Hair ties & clips

Criminal Behaviour


  • Reports of an incident where a male brazenly stole two boxes of vodka (12 bottles) from a liquor store display, exiting through a secondary door. A customer alerted staff but store policy prohibits staff interference.
  • Reports of a female waiting until staff were occupied before filling her handbag with fragrances and exiting the store. Staff estimate the products totalled over $200 in value.
  • Reports of an unassuming elderly couple attempting to steal items while waiting for their prescription. When exiting the store, the security sensor alerted staff and the stolen items were discovered in the storage compartment of their wheelie walker.
  • A grocery store has had multiple incidents of a female using an empty pram to steal items and covering the contents with a blanket. Recent CCTV footage shows an estimated $150 worth of items stolen.
  • A newsagency similarly experiences theft from an individual using a pram and blanket to conceal items or in the underneath storage compartment. The retail assistant recently caught her attempting to steal magazines.
  • A discount store is having a major issue with opportunistic stealing by local youths. These individuals are not specifically targeting any items.
  • Reports of a female entering a liquor store and brazenly stealing four bottles of Bundaberg Rum. None of the staff on duty felt comfortable intercepting the individual.
  • A retail assistant reported an unusual shoplifting experience. A female proceeded to the counter and asked for the price. In response, the individual thanked the assistant and walked out with the item in hand without paying.
  • Reports of a young female shoplifting magazines under her shirt and walking out.
  • A store often finds discarded security tags on the floor.

Fake Orders

  • A food delivery store has recently experienced multiple fake orders. When the assistant attempts to contact the individual via the provided number, it is disengaged.

Snatch and Run:

  • A young male stole a six-pack of pre-mix bourbon. The individual waited until the staff member attending to another customer before quickly entering the store grabbing the beverages and running away.
  • A local chemist repeatedly finds items located out the front of the store stolen. Staff assume that opportunistic individuals dash in, steal the items and run.

Suspected Casing

  • Reports of three male individuals repeatedly visiting a store wanting to purchase cigarettes. The store has not sold cigarettes for months. The retail assistant found their behaviour suspicious due to their repeated visits and always looking around the store.

Aggressive and Anti-Social Behaviour

  • Tobacconist staff report being repeatedly verbally abused by customers because of the increased tobacco tax. Some are concerned as the higher value of tobacco may make them more of a target for theft or armed robbery.
  • A local pharmacy often encounters abusive customers over the price of medication.
  • A takeaway shop has received abuse from customers on multiple occasions when their online ordering system malfunctions.
  • Customers have complained to retail staff about youths stealing the valve caps off their motor vehicles

General Feedback

  • Retailers are becoming more aware of the importance on not stereotyping offenders of retail crime.
  • A discount store had a major issue with crime prior to rearranging their store and removing the counter display.
  • A store owner believes that their proximity to a local skate park increases theft.
  • A retail assistant believes that the area being a low socio-economic area plays an important role of the amount of theft.


About the SafeCity Network

The National Retail Association’s SafeCity Network brings together retailers, government and law enforcement to better inform and equip retailers to reduce retail crime.

On 1 March 2018, the NRA launched the SafeCity Network as a trial in Brisbane aimed at increasing collaboration and insight between retailers to reduce retail crime. By reducing crime over the long term, the program aims to attract more shoppers and visitors, and ultimately create a more vibrant, safer retail precincts.

Participants in the SafeCity Network gain access to regular crime alerts and bulletins based on real-world intelligence shared by other retailers.