COMMACK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – The shoplifting spree at Long Island beauty shops continues.
Suffolk County Police say three men stole $9,000 worth of cologne.READ MORE: Report: Mayor De Blasio To Issue Vaccine Mandate For All New York City Municipal Workers, Including First Responders
It happened just after 2:30 p.m. on July 30.
Ulta Beauty stores in Suffolk County have been hit more than 25 times this year.
“I’d say it’s organized, its brazen, and it’s a trend nationally, and certainly a trend out here,” Suffolk County Police Chief of Detectives Mathew Lewis told Gusoff earlier this year.
Experts say this isn’t like food swiped to feed a family – it’s organized retail crime. Ben Dugan, the president of the Coalition of Law Enforcement and Retail, says Long Island is a hot spot.
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“The largest organized retail crime criminal organizations are in the New York City metropolitan area and more specifically, Long Island,” he said.
Dugan says stolen goods have been tracked from Long Island across the internet.
Retailers often instruct employees not to engage, and stay safe.
“Why would a retailer put their employees at risk to confront a potentially, and likely, dangerous shoplifter?” said Barbara Staib, president of the National Association of Shoplifting Prevention.
Staib says harsher penalties are needed.
“Shoplifting steals from all of us. It steals tax dollars. Every piece of merchandise that’s stolen is lost tax dollars,” she said.MORE NEWS: Viral Video Shows Unmasked NYPD Officer Pushing Masked Commuter Out Of Subway Station
“It is organized crime,” Lewis said. “They get 25%, the middle man gets 30, and then the online marketplace seller sells it for about 50% of its value.”