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HARDWARE RETAILING | March 2017 48 The camera system is tedious, Clubb says, as it can take hours to scroll through minute-by-minute footage, but it's especially helpful as he and his team work loss prevention cases. Before turning anything over to police, the loss prevention team puts together as complete a video as possible of a suspect's visit to the store, from the time they pull in to the parking lot to the time they leave. "Sometimes one of our employees will find empty packaging from something that was stolen," Clubb says. "They mark the date, time and location where they found it. We can go backwards from there, which greatly expedites our research time." Despite their thorough work, some cases simply can't be proven. When that happens, Clubb says they don't turn those over to the local police department or sheriff's office. He knows he'll most likely get another chance later. "If there's even a doubt from our side, we let them go," he says. "They'll be back." The loss prevention team at Buchheit also has access to a database commonly used by law enforcement, which helps them identify alleged shoplifters and their vehicles. They had to get special permission to access this database, and Clubb says it's well worth it for the information it provides to help them learn more about a suspected shoplifter after an incident. They work closely with the local police forces in each of their markets, too. "One of the most positive steps we've taken is to develop very good relationships with law enforcement agencies," says Clubb. "There's a high level of trust between us and the local police, and that makes it much more successful when prosecuting someone." If you don't already, work to improve the relationship you and your staff have with your local law enforcement agencies. Invite them to partner with you for community events, such as a safety day, or, if you have the space, invite them to host workshops in your store. Building those relationships is helpful in the day-to- day operations of your business, as well as in emergency or criminal situations. Additionally, the presence of police officers at your store— whether they are helping with an event or just shopping for something they need for their home—may help hinder shoplifters. " One of the most positive steps we've taken is to develop very good relationships with law enforcement agencies. " —Brian Clubb, Buchheit Stores Each of Buchheit's eight locations has more than 100 cameras throughout the store and in the parking lot.