Shopping Center Damage and Wire Theft

Posted by Rick Charney on December 23, 2021

Shopping center environments can provide many unique security-related challenges with two of the most common being: breaking-and-entering and copper wire theft. Thieves break in searching for various goods from retail stores while wire thieves are usually in pursuit of copper utility lines. The intent of the thieves would be to resale the materials but sadly leaving major property damage and operational downtime behind the scenes.

The following compilation shows Stealth’s involvement in these two types of security-related challenges and how our proactive security solution detected and help deter such theft.

Trespasser Climbed onto Retail Center Rooftop to Shop for Metal Wiring

Around 1:30 in the morning, a trained Stealth security operator saw an individual ascend a ladder leading to the roof of a retail center. Our operator called to have police dispatched.

Switching cameras, our operator saw the suspect walk around the roof. He was gathering wires that the operator assumed were from the HVAC units.

Two officers arrived and approached the ladder. Using the information given by Stealth’s operator, they inspected the area, located the individual and placed the thief under arrest.

Rooftop Intruder Tampering with Our Cameras

During nighttime hours, our security operator saw someone approach a rooftop surveillance camera on top of a shopping center and tamper with it. Our operator immediately activated the on-site speaker warning and contacted local authorities.

A police cruiser arrived at the center. The driver spotted the perp walking and parked the cruiser close. Two officers exited the vehicle. They placed the suspect in handcuffs, put him inside the cruiser and drove off property.

Pair Wielding Bolt Cutters and Trying to Mess with Electrical Boxes

One of our highly trained security operators saw a pickup truck parked behind a shopping center after hours. Two individuals exited the truck with wire cutters in hand. They approached on-site electrical boxes and tampered with them. Our operator contacted police.

The two suspects walked over to another electrical box attached to the side of the building and tampered with it. The two walked back to the pickup and started to leave.

A police cruiser met them head-on as they were driving away. The truck and cruiser stopped. Two officers excited the cruiser and approached the pickup.

One officer approached the driver’s side of the truck and arrested the driver. Back-up officers arrived and assisted in arresting the passenger from the truck.

Suspect Forced His Way into a Storefront by Breaking Window

An individual was seen by a trained Stealth Monitoring operator strolling across the empty parking lot of an urban shopping center at night. He peered through several windows and attempted to gain unauthorized access. Our operator sounded an on-site speaker warning, which the trespasser ignored. The monitoring operator then called to dispatch police.

The trespasser forced his way inside a storefront. Two police cruisers arrived, and officers located the trespasser inside the store. They appeared to speak with the intruder who eventually exited the store.

The officers handcuffed and arrested the trespasser.

Exclusive Security-Related Challenges Call for Real Time Video Monitoring

Each shopping center is unique. Each has different features and layouts for tenants and customers which factor into the shopping experience. These unique environments can sometimes present common areas for loitering or targets for potential thieves who are looking for the low hanging fruit.

Copper wiring is valuable and often easily accessible, which prompts criminals looking for a quick buck. Unfortunately, this includes HVAC units that are typically found on rooftops of shopping centers. The wiring can be expensive to replace, and thieves are not exactly careful when stealing, so they could damage the whole utility or HVAC system in the process. This could cause the entire shopping center to close, which can ultimately result in loss of revenue.

Shopping center storefronts are typically made up of glass doors and windows to encourage shoppers to look inside and entice them to enter. Of course, thieves can also look inside, which can entice them to break in and steal. Many thieves survey the store during the day wearing hats, sunglasses, and COVID masks.

Stealth Monitoring’s proactive live video monitoring security solution offers multiple layers of security. It starts with high-definition video surveillance cameras made by trusted manufacturers in the industry. The cameras are pre-programmed with our advanced video analytics and are installed on your property. Our highly trained remote security operators can monitor multiple cameras simultaneously and in real time.

When a suspicious incident is seen, our operators can act immediately by activating audible speaker warnings to deter thieves on your property. This usually sends them running because they didn’t realize they were being watched. Police dispatch can also be called to get officers on-scene as quickly as possible.

When our operators contact police, officers can arrive on site while the incident is in progress. Therefore, the incident is proactively resolved and often apprehensions do occur. Stealth averages more than 1 arrest every single night across all the cameras.

Past property damage, security alternatives such as guards, surrounding neighborhood, foot traffic and location all go into the equation of determining the best security solution for a center. Our shopping center security experts can help design a customized solution for your shopping center to help detect and deter trespassers and possible theft on your property.

Contact us today to learn more about detecting and deterring theft at your shopping center with Stealth – usually at up to 60% less than the cost of traditional security guard solutions.

Posted in: Crime Prevention, Video Security Systems, Security Guards & Savings, Arrests, Video Monitoring