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How Big is the Problem?

Retailers are reporting organized retail crime (ORC) has become more troublesome than ever before. Of the 125 retail companies surveyed for NRF's eighth annual Organized Retail Crime Survey, a record-setting (96.0%) say their company has been the victim of organized retail crime in the past year, up from 94.5 percent last year, and another 87.7 percent say ORC activity in the United States. has grown over the past three years.

Violence and gateway crimes are increasing and remain a problem!  The survey also indicates a growing trend in the level of violence retailers see when organized criminal gangs are apprehended (15% vs. 13% in 2011). Retailers grappling with these violent acts also report that they believe more ORC offenders are engaged in drug activity. Nearly half (49%) of respondents estimate drugs and drug activity are linked to organized retail crime incidents.
 National Retail Federation 2012 Survey

The ASIS Foundation released a report on ORC that cited estimates that organized retail theft costs anywhere between $31 billion and $50 billion annually. American Society for Industrial Security 2011

The Response

Partnerships between law enforcement and retail investigators have formed to combat the problem.  These Alliances share cross jurisdictional information to identify, disrupt, and apprehend Organized Retail Crime (ORC) crews.

Retailer and Merchant Liability Protection in Washington State

Merchants and other parties who create a database of individuals who have been apprehended in the process of committing a property crime, assessed a civil fine or penalty for committing a property crime or convicted of a property crime are not subject to civil fines or penalties for sharing information from the database with other merchants, law enforcement officials or legal professionals. Per RCW 4.24.340 The purpose of RCW 4.24.500 through 4.24.520 is to protect individuals who make good-faith reports to appropriate governmental bodies.

Revised Code of Washington protection laws to reference: RCW 4.24.220, RCW 4.24.230, RCW 4.24.340, RCW 4.24.350, RCW 4.24.500, RCW 4.24.520. 

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 In The News
Seattle Organized Retail Crime Meeting

Seattle Organized Retail Crime Meeting

Thursday, November 19 at 11 am

REI Seattle

222 Yale Ave N

Seattle, WA 98109

CLEAR Annual Conference

Coalition of Law Enforcement and Retail Conference (CLEAR)

6th Annual Conference in Baltimore on October 12-15

Click for above for additional information



Notice of Opening WSORCA Board of Directors Position

Notice of Opening WSORCA Board of Directors Position

Presently, opening exists on the Board of Directors for the Washington State Organized Retail Crime Alliance.  A description of the Board is outlined below.  While WSORCA has membership from throughout the country, Board membership must be selected from members who are positioned in Washington, and in a position which enables them to attend monthly meetings, with the majority of that attendance in person.  Those wishing consideration for a position on this board, must submit an application (found on this site), and be approved by a vote of the current Board of Directors.


Presently, opening exists on the Board of Directors for the Washington State Organized Retail Crime Alliance. [More]