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The Consequences of Stealing

By Emma O'Leary in Student News

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Security cameras hang over the checkout counters at King Soopers

There are usually one or two cases of theft per month at the King Soopers at the Table Mesa Shopping Center by Fairview students, according to Assistant Principal Ross Sutter.

Sutter said that students stealing from King Soopers has always occurred and is not a new phenomenon.  

According to Sutter, the students and parents are not aware of the consequences that come as a result of theft from King Soopers.  

“And they don’t mess around. It’s full on, full charges,” Sutter added.

According to Sutter, King Soopers has security cameras “in every crevice of that place” but that most people are unaware of this. If a person is caught stealing, a loss prevention officer intercepts them at the door and calls the police, and then the person must appear in court.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re five or 99 years old, they press charges every time,” Sutter said, referencing the notice that King Soopers gives people who have been caught stealing.

“Once they’re in court, they are at the mercy of the judge,” Sutter said.

Sutter said that consequences for stealing outside of school involve community service, a fine, and restitution, but that students face consequences in school as well.

“Primarily what we do is basically we take away all off periods,” Sutter said. “And so any off periods that the student has they have to stay on campus, they have to have a class, or we give them student aid during those times.”

A student can have their off periods taken away for anywhere between a semester and a year.

Junior Denali Pinto agrees that there should be consequences for theft through Fairview as well as outside of school. She said that not being able to leave school is an excessive punishment for the crime.

Pinto said that students might steal from King Soopers “to show their friends that they can”, or because they did not have money and wanted food. Pinto said that she thinks popularity is the motivator more frequently than a lack of money.

Sutter says that in his experience, when he questions students who have been caught stealing, he has never heard that they stole because they were hungry, even though this may be the case for some students.

“It’s never ‘I’m starving, I needed to eat that’. You know, stuff like that,” Sutter said.

Students have told Sutter that they stole because of peer pressure, they assumed that they would not be caught, or that they could not name a specific reason, and that is was a mistake.

According to Sutter, King Soopers increases the prices of items as a result of theft.

“When I talked to the manager, he said that the other thing that happens is that It hurts everybody when people steal because It drives up the prices,” Sutter said.

“Sometimes in school kids make mistakes and we don’t punish them to the fullest extent,” Sutter said. “But when they make mistakes outside in the real world just like stealing in the store, that’s not the case, it’s never going to be the case.”  

 

 

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