Date: Thursday, February 15, 2024 

Files: Various 

Victoria, BC – Last weekend VicPD officers made 23 arrests and recovered $13,972 in stolen merchandise as part of our continued effort to target violent and repeat retail theft offenders. 

Between February 9 and February 11, officers from VicPD’s Patrol Division and Outreach and General Investigation Sections worked with retail loss prevention staff to identify and arrest violent and chronic shoplifters at 13 retail stores in Victoria. 

This operation, called Project Lifter, was created in response to ongoing concerns from local businesses about regular retail theft and increased violence when there are attempts by staff to intervene, and the impact this has on business operations and staff safety. This is the second segment of Project Lifter which began as an eight-day retail theft project in December 2023 and forms a part of VicPD’s ongoing efforts to target retail theft and the associated violence. 

Project Lifter Highlights 

  • 23 Arrests and 22 charges recommended for Theft Under $5000 
  • 1 charge recommended for Theft Over $5000 
  • $13,972 in stolen merchandise recovered 
  • 4 individuals arrested from previous Project Lifter in December 2023 
  • 1 Person arrested twice during 3-day project 

This operation was funded by the Special Investigations and Targeted Enforcement (SITE) program – a three-year pilot aimed to increase police capacity to collaborate on new initiatives and supplement police resources for targeted enforcement on addressing violent, repeat offending. The funding for SITE comes from the Provincial Government’s Safer Communities Action Plan.  

Officers connected with arrested individuals to offer information on access to housing, substance use, and other community supports in an effort to break the cyclical nature of these crimes.  


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