Busi­ness own­ers learn se­cu­rity tips

Smart Start Work­shop fo­cuses on keep­ing lo­cal busi­nesses se­cure

The Morning Journal (Lorain, OH) - - FRONT PAGE - By Keith Reynolds

Keep­ing lo­cal busi­nesses safe was the key topic of dis­cus­sion at the Oct. 12 Smart Start Work­shop at Main Street Amherst.

This was the third work­shop fo­cus­ing on keep­ing lo­cal busi­nesses se­cure from thefts and rob­beries and what to do if ei­ther oc­curs, ac­cord­ing to Erin Link, owner of Etc. Bou­tique & Gifts and di­rec­tor of spe­cial projects for Main Street Amherst, 225 Park Ave.

The work­shop fea­tured a nearly two-hour pre­sen­ta­tion by Amherst po­lice Lt. Mark E. Cawthon, which fo­cused on theft, break­ing and en­ter­ing and rob­bery.

Within the realm of theft, Cawthon fo­cused on shoplift­ing, mis­use of credit cards, coun­ter­feit cur­rency and pass­ing bad checks.

He told the as­sem­bled group that when look­ing out for shoplifters, one should fo­cus on their clothes and how they act in the busi­ness.

“You never know who’s go­ing to be a shoplifter,” Cawthon said. “We’re not look­ing for their race. We’re not look­ing for sex, age or skin color.

“We’re look­ing for how they dress, how they act, how they carry them­selves, how they move about your store.”

Ac­cord­ing to Cawthon, shop­keep­ers should be on the look­out for peo­ple wear­ing cloth­ing that doesn’t fit with the weather, such as a large jacket while it’s 70 de­grees out­side.

He said clerks also should be alert around peo­ple car­ry­ing large open-style purses or news­pa­pers that could con­ceal goods.

Cawthon also ad­vised them about the pos­si­ble meth­ods shoplifters could use such as the crotch walk, dis­tract­ing work­ers and just grab­bing things and run­ning out the door.

Link said she sched­ules the safety work­shops at the be­gin­ning of the hol­i­day sea­son, be­cause that is when busi­nesses of­ten be­come tar­gets.

“Sadly, it hap­pens,” she said. “Be­fore we get into the end of Oc­to­ber, with Thanks­giv­ing and Small Busi­ness Satur­day, we needed some ed­u­ca­tion be­fore this stuff hap­pens.”

This year’s ses­sion was at­tended, not only by re­tail busi­nesses, but there were rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Elyria Pub­lic Li­brary Sys­tem, a credit union and a mas­sage ther­a­pist.

“It was nice to have all these dif­fer­ent kinds of busi­nesses, be­cause we all deal with this,” Link said. “It’s all good stuff to know.”

ERIC BONZAR—THE MORN­ING JOUR­NAL

Kathy Runser, Elyria Pub­lic Li­brary Sys­tem deputy di­rec­tor, ex­am­ines a le­gal $10bill dur­ing Main Street Amherst’s Smart Start Busi­ness Devel­op­ment Work­shop on Oct. 12. Amherst po­lice Lt. Mark Cawthon served as guest speaker of the event.

ERIC BONZAR — THE MORN­ING JOUR­NAL

Amherst po­lice Lt. Mark Cawthon speaks to at­ten­dees of Main Street Amherst’s Smart Start Busi­ness Devel­op­ment Work­shop on Oct. 12. Cawthon served as guest speaker of the event, where he touched on theft, break­ing and en­ter­ing and rob­bery preven­tion tips dur­ing the work­shop.

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