Partnership put Winnipeg police officers in Manitoba Liquor Marts

In an effort to combat a rise in brazen Liquor Mart thefts, Winnipeg police and Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries placed officers in some stores last week.“Special Duty Constables, is a service offered by the WPS for a fee,” said Andrea Kowal, communications director for MLL. “We engaged some of these special duty officers this past week at some Liquor Mart locations.”Police and the MLL have been frustrated by the quick rise in bold booze thefts from local Liquor Marts over the past year.Global NewsHelp us improve GlobalNews.caGlobal NewsTake the survey now!Story continues below

READ MORE: Manitoba Liquor Mart thefts continue despite more than 2 dozen arrestsSome of the thefts included throwing bottles at security guards, teens who tried to assault police officers when chased down, and one who managed to swipe $20,000 worth of alcohol over 18 robberies.Incident numbers rose more than 300 per cent in 2018 from 2017, from 658 thefts in Liquor Marts to more than 2,600 in 2018, said Kowal.In August, Const. Jay Murray called the thefts brazen.“Thieves are getting pretty brazen, often they’ll resort to using weapons to commit their act, to commit the theft and escape.”Murray said the booze thefts were proving to be a drain on police resources.Since October, police have arrested 62 people, said Kowal.Putting police officers in Liquor Marts to deter theft may continue, but neither Kowal or the police would confirm if that would happen.READ MORE: Teen charged after $20K in booze swiped from Manitoba Liquor Marts“The Winnipeg Police Service continues to work closely with Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries on theft prevention strategy,” Murray said Sunday.“We have in the past had special duty officers at Liquor Marts.”“Sharing details about security and anti-theft measures might compromise their effectiveness and could place our staff and customers at risk,” said Kowal.WATCH: Police investigating 1,200 thefts from Liquor Mart stores in 2018