By Daniel Katzive
A report of a possible armed robbery brought police racing down Columbus Avenue early Thursday morning to the southern end of the 20th Precinct. Scanner traffic monitored by and reported on the Citizens App showed a robbery with a possible display of a weapon at the Duane Reade at 63rd and Broadway at around 7:30am, with the suspect leaving the scene and heading uptown.
With the suspect no longer at the location, most of the responding units did not remain on the scene and Duane Reade staff went about their business serving customers. According to an NYPD spokesperson, the incident was ultimately written up as a petit larceny. The police report indicated the individual removed consumer items from a shelf, placed them in a laundry bag, and left the store without paying. Once outside, he displayed an unknown object, and this perhaps is the reason for the initial report of a weapon. No arrest was made.
The incident provides a good example of why reports based on police radio traffic, which are preliminary by nature, do not always line up with official statistics. While data from this current week is not yet available, Compstat statistics for the week ending last Sunday July 10 show there were 27 petit larcenies in the 20th precinct that week. There were just 3 robberies (thefts involving force or threat of force), and a total of 12 robberies over the past 28 days, up substantially from just 2 in the equivalent 28 day period last year.
Does any other neighborhood in the city experience as much shoplifting from drugstores as the UWS?
why only drug Storrs? the high theft items are sold in other places. why not supermarkets, large hardware stores like home depot?
Target has one to two armed off duty cops in uniform. Eventually every store in NYC will need armed security.
Drugstore items are easy to fence. I have seen people blatantly selling soap, shampoo, etc., obviously stone from the drugstores, for low prices, on the subway. Surely that could be stopped?
Yes it happens all over NYC, I have seen it in person. There was a really nice Rite Aid store at the corner of East 100 street on 1st avenue, they had a recurring problem with shoplifters and then the store permanently closed . I was actually in the store once when a shoplifter was filling up a bag and clearing out shelves. The cashiers told me it happened a lot. The Dollar Tree store that was right next to it also permanently closed a few months ago, they too had a lot of shoplifters. I miss the Dollar Tree store, a lot of people depended on it to buy basic household cleaning supplies, school supplies & other stuff.
RA has another store at 96th and Second, which may be why they closed store at 100th and First.
That being said both closed location and one at 96th were or are plagued by shoplifting.
In fact now that RA only has the one location left on UES (96th and Second) it has seen increased amount of stealing. All those who once stole from 80th and Second or 100th and First simply moved their activity over to remaining store.
It’s not an UWS phenomenon. There have been stories about it happening all over midtown, the UES, and in the East and West Villages, among other neighborhoods.
all over Queens, Astoria, Elmhurst, Rego Park, Forest Hills, also
“Brazen shoplifting video in San Francisco becomes issue in California recall”
what I have observed in Drs is a utter lack of staff. frequently these places are desolate.
I think this is another example of larger businesses starving their budgets, stripping them down do the bare minimum then feigning surprise when problems cop up. and the consumers end up paying the bill. and we citizens end up fighting petty battles at street level while Corp profits soar.
that police response was paid for by us. Duane Reade should be investing in staff and security.
is this epidemic of shoplifting happening at key food on Amsterdam and 85? that place is teaming with staff. front and center. how about fairway or basics hardware? if this is a shoplifting issue why do I only hear about it at DR and less often CVS? but never keyfood which is full of so called hi theft items?
I know someone that works in a retail establishment and they told me they are instructed by management not to confront the thieves in case they are armed.
That Key Food has about 20 wanted pictures up describing shoplifting incidents in their store within the last couple of months.
You should be grateful that the UWS is overstored It makes living here very convenient.. Duane Reade etc. are businesses and need to make a profit. Any increase in costs including additional security has to be passed on to the consumer. What security person wants to risk their life to stop a shop lifter, who will be back on the street within hours? FYI a CVS store, well trafficked store on 50th street and 8th ave. in the heart of NYC , was forced to closed because of theft.
It was a Rite Aid on 50th & 8th that closed, not a CVS. And another Rite Aid on 69th & Amsterdam also recently closed.
That was a Rite Aid.
I was at CVS on 86th and Amsterdam, muttering at a cranky self-checkout kiosk near the door, when the security man confronted a shoplifter who seemed either high or psychotically enraged. The shoplifter dropped the items he was trying to leave the store with. The security man told him to get out and not come back. The shoplifter threatened to return and beat up the security man when he got off duty. End of episode. Except that the security person was not in uniform except for a CVS jerkin, and was also busy with other tasks: helping people with the kiosks and leaving the front of the store to unlock items for customers (he had just retrieved some Zyrtec for me). I asked if the police had been called and he shrugged, “Nah, we deal with these people every day.” Am I being naive, or would a full-time, uniformed, dedicated guard stationed at the door help discourage shoplifting? Or would the store rather take constant losses than hire effective security?
Given that this might be the worst managed store in history, you are expecting too much. Just go during rush hour (after work); they cut back on cashiers at the busiest time. They are overpriced, understocked, and understaffed. They only stay in business because there’s not any direct competition now that the DR on Broadway and 87th closed.
Agree. In the funny/not funny category, I have twice received email surveys, supposedly from their manager, asking me to rate everything from store cleanliness, variety of stock, helpfulness of staff, etc. , and inviting me to come in and speak with said manager at any time. I declined on both counts. There actually is direct competition — the Duane Reade at 89th and Columbus, which features some of the surliest clerks on the planet and a sprawling, poorly organized layout that inspires little confidence. I’ve switched allegiance to the independent drugstores in the neighborhood, such as Park West, where I may not be able to buy packaged salads, but they know who I am when I call to renew a prescription.
Don’t know if it is because of theft of what, but most RA, DR, CVS and Walgreen stores have aisles after aisles of empty shelves.
During pandemic when people were buying things like crazy and or there were supply chain issues that was understandable. But two years on it’s just ridiculous.
Find ourselves just ordering things from Amazon.
Well, I was at the Duane Reade at 79th and Amsterdam about noon on Saturday and a man just blithely walked out with an armload of goods, with no ado and no apparent anxiety. I am pretty sure the checkout clerks saw it, but they turned a blind eye. Obviously, this ultimately costs every consumer on the upper west side, assuming that the stores decide it is worth continuing to do business here, despite the depredations
We wonder why there are lots of empty storefronts, here is the problem. Who wants to start a business when items are ripped out from the shelves and staff do not feel safe? We have to solve this problem as we will soon lose out also residents, if not already. We will end up with a diminished city.
Have seen this at both starbucks 66 amsterdam and 69 /bway