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TWO shoppers have been arrested at Walmart after using a sneaky trick at self-checkout, but anti-theft measures caught the perpetrators immediately.
In Hastings, Nebraska, police caught a pair of teens after they allegedly used a “common” self-checkout stealing method.
Captain Jason Haase of the Hastings Police Department said the kids had “skip-scanned” at the kiosks on Friday, per local news outlet KSNB.
Walmart Shoppers Arrested For Stealing Using Sneaky Skip-scan at Self-Checkout
The method involves scanning some items in a cart but quietly neglecting to do the same with others.
Walmart anti-theft security cameras flagged the un-purchased items, and authorities were quickly contacted.
The teens scanned $100 of merchandise from the retail giant but allegedly stole another $100 worth, police said.
Police did not release the names of the shoppers, who were believed to be related.
The Hastings Police Department told the publication that self-checkout stealing reports similar to the teens’ are more common than other shoplifting-related calls.
Self-checkout theft at Walmart has been on the rise since last year, and CEO Doug McMillon noted a “historic high” in stealing rates for the retailer in December.
Retail expert Chris Walton told The U.S. Sun in an exclusive conversation that self-checkouts can be a major pain for retailers overall.
The former Target executive and co-CEO of Omni Talk explained that theft is an issue, but another problem haunts retail giants like Walmart.
“It’s not just theft — I think theft gets thrown around a lot, but shrink is a combination of theft and misidentification of inventory,” he said.
“There’s a lot of misidentification of inventory that happens through the self-checkout process.”
“I think for the most part they work really well right now,” the retail expert said of self-checkout.
He said that shoppers who use “use smaller-sized baskets” specifically benefit from the kiosks’ efficient checkout process.
“Those things work like clockwork,” Walton added.
“I can’t remember the last time I got the ‘wrong item in the bagging area’ alert that you used to get 10 years ago every time you used one,” he noted.
“On the consumer side, I think they’re here to stay.”