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The Other Side of Holiday Shopping

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The Boston Globe has a good report looking at all the work created for law enforcement agencies during the holiday shopping season.

It is a problem that police officers face in many communities with major retail destinations. The holiday season may be about peace on Earth and good will toward men - in theory. But police officers in Burlington, Braintree, Watertown, and other communities know otherwise.

Last year, three times a day, on average, between Thanksgiving and Christmas, Burlington police responded to calls at the Burlington Mall, an 86-acre retail giant just off Interstate 95 - far more than usual, according to police.

One store last year reported $2,300 worth of goods stolen. Three shoppers reported being scammed out of $10,600 by a con artist posing as a salesman selling plasma televisions. There were 25 car accidents reported to police within a few blocks of the mall - a figure that does not include minor fender-benders, police say, and so represents just a percentage of last year's holiday shopping accidents. And then there were the arguments - usually over parking spots.

"That happens all the time," said Burlington patrolman Jim Tigges. "Mostly, at Christmastime, it's the usual. 'Tis the season, we say. I had to break up two women fighting last year."

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Elaine Misonzhnik

Senior associate editor Elaine Misonzhnik has been writing for National Real Estate Investor since June 2006 and has covered commercial real estate for more than 12 years. She first became...
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