The Jewelers’ Security Alliance preliminary crime report painted a mixed picture for the first six months of 2017, with the number of incidents rising slightly, but dollar losses dropping.
Overall, the JSA recorded 551 incidents in the first half, up from 528 in the first half of 2016, but below 2015’s tally of 562. Dollar losses fell 10 percent to $27 million in the first six months of the year, down from $30.8 million for the same period of 2016.
“The numbers can bounce up and down when you have small numbers like this,” says JSA president John Kennedy. “It can be a little bit up or a little bit down.”
What matters, he says, are the long-term trends, and they are all positive.
There was also a mini-spike in the number of homicides. Three jewelers were killed in the first half of the year, along with one store customer and a good Samaritan.
“That was the highest number in six years,” Kennedy says. “You are still talking small numbers. It’s not like there is a huge, sweeping trend.”
One other notable number: There were only 15 off-premise incidents involving traveling salespeople and others. In 2017, there were 37 such incidents.
“It used to be traveling salespeople were hit every day,” Kennedy says. “There are fewer salespeople on the road so there are fewer robberies on the road. It’s a complete change in the distribution system in jewelry.”