Violence And Theft Force Target Closures In Four Blue States

While Target’s corporate stance on social issues has caused many on the right to avoid its stores, the retail chain is apparently still popular among violent criminals.

According to a recent announcement, theft, violence, and other types of crime have led to Target’s decision to shut down a number of stores across the United States. In total, the company plans to permanently close at least nine stores in Democratic-controlled cities that have long been plagued by rampant crime.

As of Oct. 21, three stores in San Francisco and Oakland, California, three stores in Portland, Oregon, two stores in Seattle, Washington, and one store in New York City, New York, will be shuttered.

A press release this week confirmed that the company “cannot continue operating these stores because theft and organized retail crime are threatening the safety of our team and guests, and contributing to unsustainable business performance.”

Despite the best efforts to implement new security measures and other strategies to combat the surging crime, Target CEO Brian Cornell confirmed that an “unacceptable amount” of violence and theft had resulted in lost revenue and dangerous work environments.

In remarks prior to the latest announcement about store closures, he confirmed that “violence or threats of violence” at Target stores spiked by a whopping 120% during the first five months of 2023.

“We do not want to close stores,” Cornell said at the time. “We know how important our stores are. They create local jobs, they generate taxes, they’re very important for those local shoppers, and they play a critical role in communities across the country. We’ll continue to do everything in our power to keep our doors open.”

He left the door open for future closures, however, noting that “we’ll be closely monitoring the safety of our team and guests as well as the financial impact to our business as we determine the right path forward at Target.”

Target is just the latest company to announce its exit from major cities amid rising theft and violent crime.

San Francisco has seen a staggering business exodus in recent years, including in its once-vibrant Union Square, where the number of stores has been nearly cut in half — from 207 to 107 — between 2019 and May 2023.