New York supermarkets now have security tags on ICE CREAM as city becomes permanent victim of ‘professional shoplifting’

New York supermarkets now have security tags on ICE CREAM as city becomes permanent victim of ‘professional shoplifting’

Ex NYPD officer on Migrant crime: "If there are no consequences - you have repeated behaviour"

GB News
George Bunn

By George Bunn

Published: 27/03/2024

- 18:46

Gristedes and D'Agostino Supermarkets CEO John Catsimatidis said he rewards staff who stop shoplifters

A billionaire retail CEO has said his supermarkets are now putting security tags on ice cream.

Gristedes and D'Agostino Supermarkets CEO John Catsimatidis said he is now putting security in his stores across New York.

He has also had one of the most commonly stolen items, Häagen-Dazs ice cream, given anti-theft coding so security staff can trace where it is sold.

Catsimatidis added that he often rewards staff who can stop shoplifters before the police arrive.

John Catsimatidis

Gristedes and D'Agostino Supermarkets CEO John Catsimatidis

Getty/Google Maps

He told Fox Business: "Shoplifitng of ice cream is down 90 per cent. Häagen-Dazs is liquid assets. You've got to sell it within three blocks of the store otherwise it melts.

"It's about professional shoplifters if people came in and they were hungry we never got them arrested for being hungry and buying a can of tuna and bread. But professional shoplifters are wiping out the drugstores.

"We have taken the position that we defend our stores. All the big corporate stores around, they fire their employees that defend their stores. I can't understand it.

"70 years in New York I love New York and if we don't fix it up on this year when there's a big election in November. All we want is a New York to go in the right direction."


An officer

NYPD officers patrol a Manhattan subway station on March 18, 2024 in New York City


Head of security for Catsimatidis and a former NYPD officer Dominick Albergo said rewards for defending the markets range from $100 to $500, plus medical expenses and any potential legal fees (the latter has yet to arise).

Defensive techniques take a toll. Albergo told the New York Post: "A woman who worked as a manager broke her tooth after tackling a shoplifter at a Gristedes on Ninth Avenue a couple of years ago. Around the same time, an employee tried to stop someone and got stabbed at Gristedes on Eighth Avenue. In January, a shoplifter produced a knife when we stopped him and he started stabbing plastic bottles of water."

When talking about crime stats in the city, Catsimatidis said: "It comes down to this. There's eight and a half million New Yorkers in New York City that want to live in a civilised way.

"There's 3,300 repeat violators who are arrested 50 times. The city counsel, are they working for the eight and a half million workers or the 3,300 criminals? That's what it comes down to."

New York City Mayor Eric Adams, a Democrat who used to patrol the subway when he was a police officer, said he sent about 1,000 additional city police officers into the subway in February after a January uptick in assaults and thefts.

He has emphasized that crime remains rare on one of the world's largest subway networks, with about six felony crimes a day, mostly thefts, on a service that sees more than 4 million daily trips.

Earlier this month, he said he was bringing back bag checks, an occasional practice used by the New York Police Department in which officers set up a table near subway turnstiles and pick out members of the commuting crowds for searches.

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