PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN 6) – Detectives have a mountain of evidence to sift through after hauling out an estimated $50,000 of stolen merchandise from a residence that was part of an organized retail theft operation.
PPB detectives searched a home in the 4200 block of SE 90th Avenue on September 16 and found “a large cache of suspected stolen property,” police spokesperson Sgt. Pete Simpson told KOIN 6 News.
Detectives seized 45 large trash bags of stolen property, mostly clothing and shoes, many with the tags and security sensors still attached.
Jabril Coleman, Cache Coleman and JocCrystal Johnl Jackson were all arrested and booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center. None have been charged in connection to the organized retail theft case.
Police said the case will be reviewed by the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office and the case will likely be presented to a grand jury.
According to the National Retail Federation, organized retail crime accounts for up to $30 billion in economic losses to stores large and small.
The problem is affecting the Portland area and investigators are struggling to keep up.
“I don’t think the public realizes just how organized and how professional these groups are,” PPB Sgt. Greg Stewart said. Police said the clothing seized from the residence on SE 90th Avenue included brand name clothing, designer fragrances, and infant clothing.
“Criminal groups have figured out that it can be incredibly profitable to steal high end merchandise and re-sell it on-line,” Stewart said.
Retailers and police stress that organized retail theft is not shoplifting. The groups are determined and well-focused, according to police.
“(Investigators) see highly organized, highly mobile groups of retail criminals moving up and down the I-5 corridor,” Stewart said.
Industry officials told KOIN 6 News organized retail theft affects consumers because for-profit companies need to recoup lost revenue. To do that prices increase.
“Ultimately, we all do pay for it,” Stewart said. “But throughout the course of your life, it is going to cost all of us.”
Police said to protect yourself from being a victim of retail theft, know who you’re buying from. The phrase “If the deal seems too good to be true it likely is” rings true, Stewart said. The clothing may be stolen.