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Walgreens Shuts Down 17 Bay Area Stores, Target Closing Early Amid Constant Thefts

San Francisco, CA – Crime has gotten so bad in San Francisco that Target has joined other major retailers that are closing stores early or shutting down locations entirely, but so far nobody has blamed the anti-police district attorney whose liberal policies caused the problem in the first place.

Target announced Friday that it will be closing six of its San Francisco locations four hours earlier going forward in order to cut down on what has become rampant shoplifting, the Independent reported.

Stores are usually open from 7 a.m. or 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., but the six problem Target stores will open at 9 a.m. and close at 6 p.m. going forward.

“With the safety of our guests, team members, and communities as our top priority, we’ve temporarily reduced our operating hours in six San Francisco stores,” a spokesperson for target said on July 2.

The popular big box store did not attempt to sugarcoat their reason for shortening the hours, the Independent reported.

“For more than a month, we’ve been experiencing a significant and alarming rise in theft and security incidents at our San Francisco stores, similar to reports from other retailers in the area,” Target said in the statement. “Target is engaging local law enforcement, elected officials and community partners to address our concerns.”

The president of the California Retailers Association (CRA) said she wasn’t surprised by the change, KPIX reported.

“I wasn’t surprised, because we’ve seen other retailers close in San Francisco,” CRA President Rachel Michelin said. “I’m actually proud of the fact that they are trying to hold on and keep the stores open.”

CRA statistics showed the San Francisco has the fifth worst retail theft problem in the country, the Independent reported.

In May, Walgreens made a dramatic move and closed 17 stores of its Bay Area store after stealing got out of control.

That decision came after one store – located at 30th and Mission Streets – had 16 major shoplifting incidents between November of 2020 and February of 2021, the Independent reported.

A city official reported having seen Walgreens’ brand products being sold at a street market just a few blocks away, The New York Times reported.

“Half of Walgreens was on the sidewalk. I’m not kidding,” San Francisco Board of Supervisors Member Ahsha Safaí said. “I was blown away. I’ve never seen anything like it in this city.”

CVS called San Francisco “one of the epicenters of organized retail crime,” the Independent reported.

“We’ve had incidents where our security officers are assaulted on a pretty regular basis in San Francisco,” Brendan Dugan, head of CVS’ retail crime division, told city officials at a hearing in May.

Some 7-Elevens in the city won’t let customers inside after dark, KGO reported.

The 7-Eleven located in the Financial District on Drumm Street has bullet-proof shielding across the front of the door and transactions are conducted through a metal box that doesn’t open on the inside until it is shut on the outside.

Customers must ring a bell to alert the store clerk they’re outside, and then business is conducted through the glass, KGO reported.

“This window was installed like two to three months ago because it was not safe. Sometimes they would break that glass of the door,” the 7-Eleven’s manager, Bobby Singh, said.

Safai said he has reached out to the San Francisco Police Department and to San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin to come up with a plan to deal with the retail crime problem, KGO reported.

He said he had given them a week to figure out why San Francisco has been targeted.

“These are people who are recruited, organized, and are reselling these goods, and San Francisco is hurting for it,” Safai told KGO.

The irony of Safai asking Boudin for answers is that most critics blamed the district attorney for rise in crime all over the city.

Boudin ran on a platform that promised to reduce the number of incarcerated individuals in the city, and so far, he’s kept that promise to the detriment of public safety.

In his first two days in office, he fired the city’s most experienced prosecutors. He has promised lighter sentences for gang members, and vowed not to charge gun or drug crimes from traffic stops.

Boudin, 40, is the son of Kathy Boudin and David Gilbert, two members of The Weather Underground who were convicted of murdering two police officers and a Brinks security guard during an armed robbery in 1981, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Boudin was endorsed by Presidential hopeful U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), singer John Legend, and the co-founders of Black Lives Matter, as well as several first-term radical liberal prosecutors including Chicago’s beleaguered Cook County Prosecutor Kim Foxx and Philadelphia’s cop-hating district attorney, Larry Krasner.

Activist Shaun King’s Real Justice PAC and a lot of other money from outside the state of California filled the public defender’s campaign coffers, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Boudin was 14 months old when both of his parents left him with a sitter while they committed an armored car robbery in upstate New York, NBC News reported.

After his parents went to prison, he was raised by The Weather Underground’s leaders, Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, in a life of privilege that led him to Yale University.

After college, Boudin won a Rhodes scholarship and then worked as a translator for the late Communist Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, according to NBC News.

“Growing up, I had to go through a metal detector and steel gates just to give my parents a hug,” Boudin said in one of his campaign videos.

His mother, Kathy Boudin, was released from prison in 2003 after serving 22 years for the murders, but his father, David Gilbert, remains behind bars serving life in prison, NBC News reported.

The public defender ran his campaign on criminal justice reform, claiming that he was also a “victim” of his parents’ armed robbery in 1981 that left three people dead, two of them police officers.

In May, Boudin’s office dropped charges against several suspects who were caught grabbing an elderly woman by her hair and dragging her across the pavement as they carjacked her.

The entire attack was captured on security video but Boudin’s office declined to prosecute the 16-year-old girl they caught because they said they didn’t have DNA evidence of the crime.

A parolee who was arrested multiple times after his release was free to run over and kill two people with a stolen car on New Year’s Eve because Boudin’s office refused to charge him in any of those cases.

Voters elected Boudin, but the retailers’ association said that the negative impact of the district attorney’s policies is causing stores to close early or completely.

“There comes a point — with what we have shared with the elected leaders of the city — where these types of decisions have to be made,” Michelin, the CRA president, said. “The bottom line is when these employees don’t feel safe coming to work. That’s when they have to take these drastic measures.”

Written by
Sandy Malone

Managing Editor - Twitter/@SandyMalone_ - Prior to joining The Police Tribune, Sandy wrote the Politics.Net column for the Wall Street Journal and was managing editor of Campaigns & Elections magazine. More recently, she was an internationally-syndicated columnist for Conde Nast (BRIDES), The Huffington Post, and Monsters and Critics. Sandy is married to a retired police captain and former SWAT commander.

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Written by Sandy Malone

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