As retail crime has quickly become a growing concern, the National District Attorneys Association (NDAA) and Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) have announced a national partnership to take the issue head-on. The partnership has its origins in a summit held on June 30th, which brought together leading retailers and prosecutors’ offices to open lines of communication. In turn, common challenges were identified, and the work began to identify criminal networks that target local retailers.
“Retail theft is not a victimless crime. As prosecutors, we must protect the safety of retail employees and customers by holding the individuals who commit thefts, violence and other retail-related offenses accountable for their crimes. I look forward to continued discussions with the Retail Industry Leaders Association on how to uncover the criminals who profit from stolen merchandise, prevent thefts and enhance public safety for all who shop and work at our nation’s retailers,” said Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn, President of the National District Attorneys Association.
Bringing together prosecutors and retailers is essential to combatting organized retail crime and keeping our communities safe. Law enforcement agencies at multiple levels, including the federal government, have established the nexus between organized retail crime and violence, as well as broader criminal activity that includes human trafficking, cybercrimes, drug trafficking, domestic violence and sexual assault. By sharing information and working together to identify the organized criminal networks operating in our communities, we can focus our resources on cases that are vital to public safety.
On the launch of the partnership, Lisa LaBruno, Senior Executive Vice President for Retail Operations at RILA said, “Retailers are extremely grateful to begin this partnership and develop stronger ties with local prosecutors who are on the front lines of keeping our communities safe. Organized retail crime is not petty theft. Our goal is to assist law enforcement with big cases, where organized criminal rings are stealing and reselling thousands—sometimes millions—of dollars in stolen product. These networks have become more violent and brazen in recent years, and this partnership is a tremendous opportunity to target career criminals and put them out of business.”
Through this partnership, NDAA and RILA will develop training, best practice guides, thought pieces, policy papers, webinars and other educational resources for retailers, prosecutors, law enforcement and communities. To kick off the partnership, the two organizations will be hosting a webinar on October 8, 2022 on the new retail theft task force recently launched by the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office in Phoenix, AZ. Check back soon for more information on this webinar by visiting https://ndaa.org/training-
Formed in 1950, NDAA is the oldest and largest national organization representing state and local prosecutors in the country. With more than 5,000 members representing over two thirds of the state and local prosecutors’ offices, NDAA is recognized as the leading source of national expertise on the prosecution function and is a valuable resource for the media, academia, government, and community leaders. NDAA’s mission is to provide state and local prosecutors with the knowledge, skills, and support they need to ensure that justice is done and that public safety rights are protected.
RILA is the US trade association for leading retailers. They convene decision-makers to collaborate and gain from each other’s experience. They advance the industry through public-policy advocacy and promote operational excellence and innovation. And through research and thought leadership, they propel developments that foster both economic growth and sustainability. Their aim is bold but simple: to elevate a dynamic industry by transforming the environment in which retailers operate.
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