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San Francisco Store Implements New Security Measures

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A hardware store in San Francisco’s desirable Cow Hollow neighborhood has been plagued by rampant shoplifting to the point where it is now requiring all customers to wait for an employee escort while shopping due to safety concerns.

To curb thefts, which have included whole displays being stolen, the store placed a table at the entrance with a note asking shoppers to wait for assistance from an employee who will spend two hours in the morning and evening helping one customer at a time.

The store manager said the dollar amounts stolen have been significant and dangerous for employees and customers as tools are increasingly being taken.

Regular customers understand the need for this unusual measure after 24 years of escalating thefts, which the manager called the worst he’s ever seen, leading to precautions like pans being drilled to fixtures.

“Please wait for assistance. Thank you,” a note reads. “Attention shoppers: Due to the rampant shoplifting, Fredericksen has introduced a One-On-One shopping experience. Wait here and a clerk will be right with you to help you with all your shopping needs. We’re sorry for the inconvenience.”

“It’s pretty bad. I mean, the dollar amounts are pretty significant. And with the tools, and now we’re getting snatch-and-grabs, when they come in and take whole displays, so it’s getting kind of dangerous for the employees and the customers,” store manager Sam Black stated.

“We just want to make it uncomfortable for the thieves so they go somewhere else,” Black said, adding, “People aren’t happy; the regulars, they can’t believe it. We can’t believe it. But they’ve been really understanding.”

“We had to do something,” he said.

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