Self-Check Out Crime

A self-checkout shopper is seeing the true price of crime.

Self-checkout is becoming increasingly common, because it’s an easier option for all involved. It is also, apparently, a great way for people to steal without human eyes watching them.

One woman pulled a “switcheroo” at a Walmart in Kentucky, putting barcodes from a toothbrush holder on a children’s rug and slipcover. The difference in price was $80.80. A store employee caught her, so Walmart was fine.

The woman wasn’t. While shoplifting theft of less than $500 is usually a misdemeanor, a grand jury indicted this woman with “unlawful access to a computer,” a class C felony that carries a sentence of five to ten years.

This whole thing is bad news. First, because humans apparently can’t be trusted to be honest. Second, because if this becomes a common felony charge, it could lead to a whole new source of inmates to overcrowd already bursting prisons. Third, if stores have to get rid of self-checkouts, it will be bad for stores and for customers.

Though maybe it will be good for employees, who stores would have to hire more of if they can’t use automated checkouts.

Nah. Self-checkouts are here to stay. And maybe next armed robots to keep a watchful eye. (Please no!)

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