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THUNDER BAY, Ontario -- Sometimes it takes a little creativity and a lot of extra eyes to catch a criminal. Mac's Convenience Stores has joined Circle K, also owned by Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc., in using social media to identify thieves, according to a Net News Ledger report.
Following an incident of theft or robbery, the chain will post surveillance images to its Mac's Crime Busters Facebook page and Twitter feed, @MacsCrimeBuster. A description of the suspect and alleged crime will accompany the images, along with a request to call or text Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477) or submit a tip online if anyone has information that would assist the police in apprehending the suspect.
"We hope this forward-thinking approach to crime prevention will assist in the resolution of unsolved crimes," said Sean Sportun, manager, security and loss prevention for Mac's in Central Canada. "Exposing criminals on our social media pages will certainly make them think twice before victimizing our retail business."
"We have the technology and we are going to use it," added Tom Moher, Mac's vice president of operations in Central Canada. "By using social media we will reach a more diverse demographic in our effort to combat crime and enhance public safety."
Additionally, Mac's plans to post notices on store entrances and on in-store media screens advising customers of its intentions to use images of suspects who commit crimes on store property. Following an arrest, a suspect's image will be removed and replaced with the title "apprehended."
Local authorities approved of Mac's efforts. "I am pleased that Mac's is initiating proactive measures in an attempt to stem the tide of robberies and make our community safer," said Thunder Bay Mayor Keith Hobbs. "I encourage the public to support this initiative."
Mac's will also fund Crime Stoppers' $200 reward for successful tips.