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Loitering Issues in Shopping and Retail Centers and Their Impact on Your Property

Posted by Rick Charney on Sep 8, 2023

Loitering and vagrancy issues at shopping and retail centers can lead to a variety of security concerns that can negatively impact tenant businesses, their customers, and the overall value perception of a property. Loiterers may engage in shoplifting, theft, acts of vandalism, graffiti, or other forms of property damage, may harass or intimidate customers or employees, can use the property as a place to engage in drug use or other illegal activities, and can generally create an unsafe and uncomfortable environment. 

Ultimately, persistent loitering and the associated security issues can harm the reputation of a shopping or retail center property and its tenants, deterring customers from returning and businesses from leasing space in the future. 


In part one of this video, a Stealth security operator spotted an individual settling down with their belongings at approximately 6:44 p.m. on a shopping center property. The individual was then observed taking an unknown substance before observing security operators activated audible alarms and contacted local police dispatch. Responding officers arrived and took the individual into custody. 

In part two of this video, at 7:24 a.m., Stealth security professionals noticed an individual loitering on the walkway in front of a shopping center client, that appeared to be resting flat out in front of a business. Local police were called, and the audible warnings were activated. Responding officers arrived quickly and were seen making contact with the individual before taking them into custody. 

A Proactive Security Solution Can Help Protect Your Shopping and Retail Center from the Damages Caused by Persistent Loitering and Vagrancy 

Loitering and vagrancy issues are complex and can be difficult to eradicate, but they don’t have to spell trouble for your property.  

Surveillance cameras alone can act as a deterrent in some cases, but it may not be enough to keep loiterers, vandals, thieves, and other criminals from targeting a location, especially if it becomes clear that those cameras aren’t being watched. Passive surveillance may help solve a crime after the fact, but many criminals and loiterers have learned to avoid detection simply by hiding their faces from camera view. If no one is watching your surveillance, they can escape easily, and no one will know about anything untoward has happened until long after they’re gone. 

Stealth’s live video monitoring, however, is a proactive security solution that can help deter and disperse loiterers and other criminals in real time. Highly trained security operators monitor strategically placed analytics-based cameras, looking for suspicious or unusual activity. When our staff spots someone or something out of place, they can take immediate action, sounding audible alarms that can send trespassers and loiterers running, or contacting local law enforcement dispatch to respond to the area when police intervention is advisable. 

When police dispatchers receive our calls, we provide them with live, up-to-the-minute details and descriptions of criminal activity in progress, which means they typically elevated our call priority and respond onsite faster, leading to better security outcomes at your property. 

Additionally, Stealth has a video review team that analyzes footage from relevant cameras when there’s an incident, providing a concise summary and related information for use in any police investigations or liability issues. 

For more information about how Stealth Monitoring’s proactive security solution can help protect your property from the damage caused by loiterers and vagrants while saving you up to 60% on security costs, contact our team of shopping and retail security specialists today. 

Texas Private Security License Number: B14187
California Alarm Operator License Number: ACO7876
Florida Alarm System Contractor I License Number: EF20001598
Tennessee Alarm Contracting Company License Number: 2294
Virginia Private Security Services Business License Number: 11-19499
Alabama Electronic Security License # 002116
Canada TSBC License: LEL0200704