Pelosi slams ‘outrageous’ crime surge, won’t cop to its cause

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Pelosi slams ‘outrageous’ crime surge, won't cop to its cause

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi blasted an “attitude of lawlessness” across the country Wednesday, decrying a recent surge in smash-and-grab crimes – particularly in her hometown of San Francisco – but refusing to admit it stems from police funding cuts and bail reform measures pushed by left-wing lawmakers.

“It’s absolutely outrageous,” Pelosi (D-Calif.) said when asked about the crime spike. “Obviously, it cannot continue. But the fact [is] that there is an attitude of lawlessness in our country that springs from I don’t know where … and we cannot have that lawlessness become the norm.”

“It must be stopped, and it’s not just San Francisco,” Pelosi emphasized. “It’s in our entire country.”

The brazen group robberies have made national headlines for weeks. Last month, for example, around 80 people raided a San Francisco-area Nordstrom department store and drove off in two dozen cars with up to $200,000 in goods, police said.

Similar thefts have been reported across California, as well as in Chicago. On Tuesday, a visibly frustrated San Francisco Mayor London Breed announced plans to crack down on retail thefts, home break-ins and other criminal behavior that has flourished during the tenure of progressive District Attorney Chesa Boudin.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she doesn’t know where the “attitude of lawlessness in our country” is coming from.
Getty Images

“What I’m proposing today, and what I will be proposing in the future, will make a lot of people uncomfortable, and I don’t care,” said Breed. “We are past the point where what we see is even remotely acceptable.”

“It’s time the reign of criminals who are destroying our city, it is time for it to come to an end,” Breed added. “And it comes to an end when we take the steps to be more aggressive with law enforcement, more aggressive with the changes in our policies and less tolerate of all the bulls–t that has destroyed our city.”

In addition to boosting police patrols, Breed said she would introduce legislation to allow law enforcement real-time access to surveillance video in certain situations and to make it harder for people to sell stolen goods.

About 25 cars just blocked the street and rushed into the Walnut Creek Nordstrom making off with goods before getting in cars snd speeding away. At least two people arrested at gunpoint.
San Francisco Mayor London Breed plans on helping police grab access to surveillance footage in order to combat the rise of retail thefts.
Twitter / @JodiHernandezTV

In Chicago, by contrast, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said earlier this month that she was “disappointed” retailers “are not doing more to take safety and make it a priority,” suggesting the robberies were the fault of businesses and business owners.

New York City leaders have cast doubt on the true extent of the crime surge. Outgoing Mayor Bill DeBlasio claimed Sunday that the city is “much safer” now than it was eight years ago. 

Last summer, New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez posited that the looting crime wave was caused by people who “need to feed their child and they don’t have money” – which Pelosi directly disputed Wednesday.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki claims rising crime is coming from “guns and gun violence.”
Getty Images

“These people coordinate with each other and they plan traffic patterns and the rest so they can reach their goal and depart very quickly,” the Speaker said. “This isn’t like somebody stealing something to go home because they don’t have money to buy. This is about stealing for profit.”

Meanwhile, the White House has shifted the blame for crime to the coronavirus pandemic and former President Donald Trump.

“Big cities are dealing with smash-and-grab robberies, a record number of police officers have been shot and killed this year. What is President Biden going to do about all this lawlessness?” Fox News reporter Peter Doocy asked press secretary Jen Psaki earlier this month.

The clip released by the LAPD shows a hooded and masked man nonchalantly strolling through a Nordstrom department store, before speeding up to cut off a guard walking toward a door.
Footage shows a robber spraying on a security guard during a smash-and-grab at a Nordstrom department store in Los Angeles.
LAPD

“Well, Peter, I would say that when the president proposed additional funding in his budget over the funding that had been proposed by the prior president to increase in support local police departments, make sure we keep cops on the beat,” Psaki said.

“Does the president still think that crime is up because of the pandemic?” Doocy further asked.

“I think many people have conveyed that and also one of the … root causes of crime in communities is guns and gun violence. And we’ve seen that statistically around the country,” Psaki responded.

Four suspects steal over $20,000 worth of items at an Apple Store in the Santa Rosa Plaza in Santa Rosa, California on Nov. 24, 2021.
Four suspects steal over $20,000 worth of items at an Apple Store in the Santa Rosa Plaza in Santa Rosa, California on Nov. 24, 2021.
Santa Rosa Police Department

“So when a huge group of criminals organizes themselves and they want to go loot a store — a CVS, a Nordstrom, a Home Depot until the shelves are clean — do you think that’s because of the pandemic?” Doocy pressed.

“I think a root cause in a lot of communities is the pandemic, yes,” Psaki said.

Last week, the chief executives of some of America’s biggest retailers — including Best Buy, Target, CVS and Dollar General — called on Congress to pass legislation making it harder for stolen goods to be resold through online markets.

A shoplifter brazenly stuffs items in a garbage bag inside a San Francisco Walgreens on June 16, 2021.
A shoplifter brazenly stuffs items in a garbage bag inside a San Francisco Walgreens on June 16, 2021.
Twitter / Lyanne Melendez

“As millions of Americans have undoubtedly seen on the news in recent weeks and months, retail establishments of all kinds have seen a significant uptick in organized crime in communities across the nation,” wrote the Retail Industry Leaders Association, which urged lawmakers to pass the Integrity, Notification and Fairness in Online Retail Marketplaces (INFORM) for Consumers Act.

“In the current environment, criminal networks and unscrupulous businesses have exploited a system that protects their anonymity to sell unsafe, stolen, or counterfeit products with little legal recourse. This lack of transparency on particular third-party marketplaces has allowed criminal activity to fester.”

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi argues most retail thefts are coordinated.
EPA/MICHAEL REYNOLDS

On Wednesday, Pelosi revealed that the INFORM Act would be included as part of a separate bill that primarily deals with supply chain security and semiconductor research.

“That would require those who are selling online especially to establish their legitimacy as to where these products came from,” said Pelosi, who added: “It is out of the question that people should be able to think that they can just steal things, profit from them, and not have any accountability on it.”

With Post wires

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