By Sia Nyorkor
KWCH 12 Eyewitness News
10:15 PM CST, November 11, 2012
A JCPenney security guard was stabbed by a suspected shoplifter.
He was taken to the hospital in critical condition Saturday night.
Police tell us the guard followed two people outside the storeafter they were caught on-camera stealing several items. That's when a man pulled-out a knife and stabbed the guard in the chest.
Wichita police say, shoplifting is increasing.
It's typically the season for giving but for some--a time for taking. Saturday night, it lead to violence.
The guard survived--but was taken the hospital in critical condition. The man and woman involved were stopped and held by another shopper until police got there and arrested both of them.
Police say they are making it priority to work with businesses to prevent shoplifting but it's a constant struggle. Mike Trowbridge, assistant manager at Dollar Tree on West Kellogg says he's only ever tried to catch one person trying to steal.
"They came up to the front, just dropped what they had and ran out the door," he says.
Police are especially concerned about the West Kellogg area, which has seen a lot of thefts.
Trowbridege thought about hiring extra security for the holiday rush but says he'll take care of it himself instead.
"I think it's in their mindset if they're gonna do it or not, it just depends on who's working," he says.
That's why police and stores depend on shoppers too.
"The pressure to buy gifts and not everybody has money and so then yeah, they try to take what doesn't belong to them," says Kerry Jennings.
"The economy is down right now so everybody's doing what they need to do, in a way, they shouldn't do it but we can't stop them," says Trowbridge.
Police are going to work with businesses to come up with a plan to reduce shoplifting.
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