WAYNE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Police in New Jersey are trying to tackle a disturbing trend: parents using their children to help them shoplift.

Employees at the Wayne Town Centre Mall said they see it too often.

On Tuesday, police arrested a 26-year-old Paterson woman accused of shoplifting more than $1,000 worth of merchandise with her young daughter.

From now on when officers with the Wayne Police Department see similar scenarios they’ll contact the New Jersey Division of Youth and Family Services, CBS2 reported.

“You’re not giving these kids the opportunity to grow up and be productive citizens, you’re training them to be thieves, you’re training them to break the law, you’re rewarding them for bad behavior,” Wayne Police Capt. Laurence Martin said.

The Division of Youth and Family Services, now known as Child Protection and Permanency, can taken children from negligent parents and put them in foster care.


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