Some people only have to read that sign and they will avoid the fence or area on which the sign has been posted.

Other people require more information in order to be deterred from entering a dangerous area:

1)      They may be unable to read or understand English and require a sign written in their own language or a graphic image (e.g. lightening bolt) in order to be deterred;

2)      They may need an explicit warning:  if you TOUCH THE FENCE, you can be ELECTROCUTED; or

3)      They may need additional information: if someone touches the fence and then touches YOU, then BOTH of you may be electrocuted.

Some people are not deterred by any of the above information. They disregard or discount the information or warnings. 

And there is a subset of individuals who not only are NOT deterred by warnings, but who are apparently stimulated by warnings which in effect motivate them to engage in the very behavior warned against.

People who do not understand or obey warnings very often get shocked: if they are lucky they live; if they’re not lucky, they die.

Shoplifting is playing with HIGH VOLTAGE. And engaging in such behavior can have expensive, and even fatal, consequences.

Selected intervention strategies can effectively prevent, deter, or diminish the incidence of shoplifting, with significantly reduced costs to law enforcement, retailers, and consumers

If that is so, why are these interventions not being utilized?

More on that in our next post.


The Tier- 1 Program provides education, information, assessment, and referral services for first-time arrested retail theft offenders. Its  multi-disciplinary staff  has also provided consultive and research services for more than 27 years to retail merchants, law enforcement, and members of the judiciary who want to establish self-supporting alternative sentencing and intervention services for individuals charged with retail theft.


© Michael J. Pisani 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Michael J. Pisani and Tier1Program with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.