It turns out that thieves are smarter than politicians give them credit for, and thanks to Proposition 47 that passed in late 2014, this is something California is learning the hard way.
Proposition 47 downgraded drug possession and some theft crimes to misdemeanors in order to reduce prison and jail populations, and on that score, the referendum was successful.
However, as with most other targeted laws, Proposition 47 had other unintended consequences that were not considered.
Now that any theft below $950 keeps the crime a misdemeanor, thus ending the possibility of charging those cases as a felony with a potential prison sentence, shoplifting has increased significantly, thus adding to the expense and headache for large and small retailers alike.
Safeway, Target, Rite Aid and CVS say shoplifting has increased at least 15%, and in some cases, has doubled since voters approved Proposition 47, and preliminary FBI crime reports show a 12% spike…