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Police Step Up Presence For Black Friday Security

Reported by: Send eMail Katy Brown
Web Producer: Heath Harrison
Reported: Nov. 28, 2013 5:47 PM EST
Updated: Nov. 28, 2013 6:28 PM EST

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Black Friday Security
Eyewitness News Photo

South Charleston , Kanawha County , West Virginia

Because of the spike in crime during the holidays, police in Kanawha County are upping security in stores for Black Friday.

Walmart was open all day Thursday, and it's already been a busy day for South Charleston police.

A man was arrested at about 2 p.m. before he could even make it to the dinner table, not the best start for 2013's Black Friday.

"If you shoplift, you will go to jail tonight and spend the rest of thanksgiving at South Central Regional jail," Travis Bailes, of the South Charleston police Department, said.

And that was the fate of one man at the Southridge Walmart, who police said was caught trying to steal nearly $400 in merchandise.

He was caught by South Charleston police, who had amped up their security at the store.

“We're here just to mainly deter any thefts from the store, and to try to keep the peace once Black Friday starts happening here," Bailes said.

Several officers were stationed throughout the store.

Bailes said many of the shoplifters are looking for electronics or anything with value.
"There's a lot of product on the floor right now," he said.

Product not to be picked up by shoplifters, but by the anxious Black Friday shoppers.

And police were not only amping up security at Walmart, but will also be patrolled the streets to make sure shoppers got home safe on this Thanksgiving.

Police said one of the biggest problems, since many people don't have to work Friday, is drinking and driving, something they will be watching for Thursday night.

“We just want to make sure everybody has a great thanksgiving and makes it home OK," Nikki Rowe, of South Charleston police, said.

And if you're heading out for the Black Friday shopping sales, here are a couple of things to keep in mind:

- Reduce your distractions, such as talking on the cell phone, and be aware of your surroundings.
- Always park in well-lit areas.
- And never leave personal items in your car and in plain sight.
- Stay calm while you're out there. Plenty of people coming out Friday night and all looking for the same good deals.




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