(NEW YORK) - Jewelers’ Security Alliance (JSA) released its 2010 Annual Crime Report covering crime against the jewelry industry in the U.S. The total number of crimes against the industry decreased by 4.5% from the prior year, with total dollar losses of $80.8 million, a decrease of 17.3%.
John Kennedy, President of JSA, stated: “Increased efforts by the FBI and local law enforcement agencies had resulted in the arrests of 538 criminals who attacked the industry in 2010. The cumulative effect of taking hundreds of jewelry criminals off the streets year after year has had a strong impact on reducing crime.” He went on to say: “Increased information sharing by jewelers and the police regarding suspects, crimes and scams had prevented many crimes and led to many arrests. We are seeing powerful results from JSA’s Local Jewelers Crime Prevention Networks Project.”
Kennedy said that the popular wisdom was that crime against the jewelry industry would increase in an economic downturn, but that this was not the case. He pointed to several key economically driven factors that helped lead to decreased crime: fewer retail stores as targets - since many had closed, fewer traveling jewelry salespersons on the road and lower inventories in retail stores.
The Report breaks down by state the 1,487 crimes reported to JSA for 2010. The state experiencing the most crimes was California, with 214 crimes, followed by Illinois (144), Florida (122), Texas (119) and New York (90).
Grab and run crimes continued to be one of the most frequent crimes against the industry, with 359 crimes reported to the JSA, and burglaries with 312 crimes not far behind.
Kennedy said: “The fight against jewelry crime is never-ending. While much progress has been made in the last decade in reducing crime, getting law enforcement more involved and educating and informing jewelers on security, the risk of crime and violence is something that jewelers still face every day. Even a momentary lapse of careful security procedures can result in tragedy.”