Aurora Police Department posting mugs of convicted shoplifters on Facebook page

AURORA, Colo. - Would you give it a like or just scroll by? Aurora Police are posting the mug shots of shoplifters on their Facebook page.

A special task force on shoplifting was created in March to try to stop the rising number of shoplifting case, especially at the Town Center in Aurora and nearby businesses and shopping centers, Sgt. Chris Amsler told 7NEWS.

"Shoplifters from around metro area were coming to Aurora because they had heard that all that would happen to them would be just a ticket," Amsler said. "Now when officers go out, people get arrested, taken to the City Detention Center, booked and are required to post a bond."

The task force also started posting the mug shots of the shoplifters arrested last month. However, Chief Dan Oates recently changed the policy to posting only the mug shots of those who have been convicted.

On Thursday, the photos of 20 convicted shoplifters were on the Facebook page. There were men and woman, young and old. Each photo listed the person's sentence -- ranging from a fine of about $300 to jail time of seven to 30 days.

"We're using this as a deterrent and to get the message out there," Amsler said. "If you come to Aurora and shoplift, there’s a strong possibility that you’re going to end up in jail."

Amsler said shoplifting was down 60 percent in March this year compared with the same month in 2012 and 2013. Reports of shoplifting and theft were down 58 percent.
Amsler said officers are working with local businesses on how to prevent shoplifting. Officers are also sharing the mug shots with local business so they know who to watch for.
The Aurora Police Department Facebook page has about 8,100 likes.
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