Target Leaving Baltimore Mall: Crime Doesn’t Pay

“Community leaders” are indignant about Target leaving Baltimore and pretend they don’t know why.

Why is the Target leaving Baltimore, when it was the cornerstone store for Mondawmin Mall? Local news proclaims this a great mystery:

But other news stories show people doubting that the Target store wasn’t doing good business because the parking lot was always full.

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Well, shoplifters and paying customers both drive to stores in cars.

The story in the Baltimore Brew gets at answers: “Target’s decision – was it theft, poor profitability or lack of “gentrification” on the West Side?

Reeling from the revelation that Target is leaving Mondawmin Mall, local officials have been grasping at rumors and conjecture to explain the chain’s decision.

Mayor Catherine Pugh announced yesterday that she is skeptical of claims that the West Baltimore store is “under-performing” and alluded to data that she says she’s seen that showed the store did a large amount of business.

“It’s a 28-million-dollar store. People don’t walk away from that kind of revenue,” she told reporters at City Hall.

[…]

Meanwhile, state Sen. Barbara A. Robinson, who represents the 40th district where the store is located, fed a persistent shoplifting rumor.

At a community forum on Monday night, she said that “a company representative. . . actually did talk about theft” at the store.

Published reports say that Baltimore Police received 231 calls for larceny at the store between November 14, 2016 and November 13 this year. There was no further data on how the number of calls compare to other Target locations or how many of the calls resulted in arrests.

At the forum, organized by 7th District Councilman Leon Pinkett, many distraught residents offered anecdotal accounts about the store, most of them describing it as always busy.

Notice in the story story below, a man gets applause for saying that the next store should be required to sign a “benefits agreement” for the community so that the store doesn’t profit alone but “we profit as well” (1:34).

This total confusion and ignorance is why people can’t have nice things. A store doesn’t stay in business unless it profits customers by providing them things they want at a price point they are willing to pay. The fact that the mere removal of Target will hurt the community is proof that Target benefitted the community without having to sign any agreement. On the other hand, if people are profiting themselves without profiting Target by shoplifting, then Target clearly has to leave.

In addition, would you invest in an area where this happens?

But that was only one instance of a much larger problem. Go to YouTube and enter “Mondawmin Fight” and search and you will find instances of public mass violence going back years. No wonder Target doesn’t want to sink more money into that cultural sinkhole.

But the “city leaders” won’t admit that anyone is to blame except Target.

Read the entire Baltimore Brew story.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com


About the author

Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder is the "nom de plume" (or "nom de guerre") of a fifty-ish-year-old writer and stroke survivor. He lives in St Louis with his wife and still-at-home children. He has been a freelance writer and occasional political activist since the early nineties. He describes his politics as Tolkienesque.

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