The Things We Steal

New York magazine has by-the-numbers look at shoplifting, including a list of the most frequently stolen items:

Highly targeted items:
• Designer handbags
• High-end vacuums
• High-end mixers
• GPS devices
• Kids’ electronics

Designer handbags, sure, but high-end vacuums is a surprisingly one to me! How do you make off with a vacuum? I guess if it’s a Roomba, it’s small enough to hide in a bag?

Also, a vital note: “According to a 2008 Columbia University study, shoplifting ‘was more common among those with higher education and income, suggesting that financial considerations are unlikely to be the main motivator.’”

Photo: Eirik Newth


7 Comments / Post A Comment

gelatinouscube (#4,706)

I was ignominiously caught stealing eye shadow from Stop & Shop before my senior prom. In my defense: It was very expensive and i was very male (and a bit goth?)! Luckily, they let me go but BANNED me from said Stop & Shop for a year. I have never shoplifted since, and I have only ever gone back a handful of times since to the store–and even at the age of 34 I will try to avoid going whenever I am home visiting.

Kimberly Alison (#4,465)

I was talking to the owner of an adult toy store last week and she said that people come in and steal the display models ALL THE TIME. She even noted that some people stole the rechargeable toys, but didn’t grab the chargers.

EvanDeSimone (#2,101)

I knew a lot of people in high school who would shop lift CD’s for bands and artists that they were ashamed to be seen buying. (Not me! Never me!…Totally me) Digital music has been a total boon to the buyers of guilty pleasure pop music. It’s between you and the ghost of Steve Jobs now.

Can you just program the Roomba to go to your house at night and then return to the store in the morning?

OllyOlly (#669)

One time when I was in middle school a friend got me to be a lookout while she stole some shirts from Hot Topic. I am not sure I have ever confessed that to anyone, as it haunted me at the time.

Allison (#4,509)

I THINK about shoplifting all the time, but have never actually done it (intentionally). One time I bought a robe and found a necklace in the pocket after I got home. I thought that was ingenious, but had obviously failed whoever’s idea that was.

WhyHelloThere (#1,398)

I’m wondering if rich people shoplift more because they have a sense of impunity. They can’t imagine that they would really get in trouble, because people like them don’t get in trouble. I wouldn’t ever shoplift because I am 100% sure that I would be caught and have my mugshot be googleable forever on all of those terrible mugshot sites.

I mean, I also wouldn’t shoplift because it’s wrong, but the mugshot sites would deter me even if ethics didn’t.

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