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Sheriff makes change for shoplifters to go straight to jail

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The Kalamazoo County sheriff is making a change that allows police officers to take shoplifting suspects straight to jail, rather than issue them citations.

The switch made by Sheriff Richard Fuller gives police officers from all jurisdictions in the county the option to lodge retail fraud suspects in the Kalamazoo County Jail.

That's regardless of how much the shoplifted goods are worth or whether it's the suspect's first offense.

The Kalamazoo Gazette reports officers were directed in the past to give suspects citations and release them if the value of stolen goods was low and they had no prior arrests.

Fuller said in a news release that the directive was due to overcrowding at the jail, but renovations alleviated that problem.

Fuller says the change is aimed at reducing retail fraud and recidivism.

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