After an interview in which she questioned whether rampant smash and grabs are really happening, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez of the New York Rep. was lambasted by Republicans as well as business leaders.
“A lot these allegations of organized theft aren’t actually panting out,” Ocasio Cortez stated in an interview last week with The Washington Times.
She said that she believes it was a Walgreens California employee who cited it. However, the data doesn’t support this belief.
These comments were met with resistance from Republican lawmakers and retail leaders, as well as Walgreens.
” Organized Retail Crime is one the top challenges facing” Walgreens, a Walgreens spokesperson, told The Washington Times that the crime has “evolved beyond shoplifting, petty theft, to the sale of stolen or counterfeit goods online.”
Rep. Rodney Davis (an Illinois Republican) stated that she doesn’t know the data she’s talking about.
You don’t need to have a lot of data from San Francisco or California. You can just walk down the street and find the CVS Eastern Market,” he stated, referring to a part of Washington, D.C. that is near the Capitol. “I have seen it happen multiple times when I was there to buy things. Someone will walk in and take over a shelf and then leave.”
Jim Banks, an Indiana Republican Representative said Ocasio-Cortez’s comments were “tone-deaf” and offensive to the family Kevin Nishita, an Oakland security guard. In November, Ocasio-Cortez was killed while trying to defend a news crew covering a smash-and grab crime.
The Retail Industry Leaders Association also criticized her comments in a comment to The Washington Times.
“Respectfully the Congresswoman doesn’t know what she’s talking about.” Jason Brewer, RILA senior vice president of communications, stated in an email that both the data and the stack of video evidence make it clear that this problem is growing and requires solutions. “If she doesn’t care about organized theft and violent attacks against retail employees, she should simply say so.”
California has been the victim of numerous smash-and-grab attacks since November. Most of the crime occurred in and around San Francisco or Los Angeles.
Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom called on local mayors “step up” to hold the perpetrators accountable and said they should be prosecuted. California Highway Patrol was also increased along highways close to shopping areas.
Walnut Creek was the victim of smash-and-grab thieves who stole $125,000 worth of merchandise from Nordstrom. This led to Walnut Creek’s council approving $2 million to increase its security and police department.
The state’s police union leadership has also criticised the repeated crimes and blamed Proposition 47 in California and the ACLU for backing the ballot measure. Shoplifting charges for thefts of less than $950 were reduced to misdemeanors under Proposition 47.
Craig Lally, president of Los Angeles Police Protective League, stated that when society takes away accountability for criminal behavior, criminals are empowered to commit more crimes. Drug addicts ignore mandatory treatment and vandalism, petty theft, and riotous looting, and even murder.
“One doesn’t need to be clairvoyant if one predicts that California’s ACLU’s Proposition47 would make a family trip at the Home Depot or mall into a dangerous gamble for our citizens.”
Fox News reached OcasioCortez’s offices but they did not immediately reply to Fox News’ Sunday Morning request for comment.