lcbo toronto

Shocking video shows Ontario man attempting to stop LCBO robbery

A shocking video showing a man attempting to stop a brazen robbery at an LCBO location has been reshared across social media platforms hundreds of times and amassed thousands of responses.

The roughly 50-second clip picks up in the middle of the altercation, when two men and one woman are seen carrying bags full of products out of the store. 

As they are attempting to leave, another shopper stands in their way and confronts them. After a brief exchange of words, the shopper punches one of the booze bandits in the face, and the woman — who many assumed to be part of the group of thieves — leaves the store using a separate exit. 

The camera then pans over to the alcohol retailer's employees who are watching the whole situation unfold, as another person is heard saying, "Call 911!" 

Others in the store continue to tell the man in the gray hoodie, "Back off," "He has a knife," and "Let him go." 

The two thieves can be seen leaving the store while the shopper who intercepted them continues to hold his fists up and throw punches outside.

The video ignited polarizing discussions about robberies at LCBO locations in general, like how the retailer can better deter similar instances from happening, as well as the role of employees in responding to thefts. 

there is no way I’m going to potentially risk my life for some vodka bottles and a big corporation, the employees did right

Back in February, the LCBO received an onslaught of criticism after it announced its anti-theft pilot program, which would introduce controlled entrances at six of its stores. 

The program was set to launch in the spring and continue for a year at a handful of LCBO stores in Thunder Bay, Sioux Lookout and Kenora. 

"These stores were chosen because their contained geography from other LCBO stores allows us to measure the effectiveness of controlled entrances on theft," the company said in a press release.

As part of the program, customers who appeared 17 years of age or older would have to present their IDs to security staff to ensure that they had not been involved in any past incidents at an LCBO store. 

Following heated backlash, Ontario's Minister of Finance, Peter Bethlenfalvy, ordered the LCBO to cancel the pilot immediately

"Following direction from the Ontario Government, LCBO will not be moving forward with our controlled entrances pilot," the alcohol retailer said in a subsequent press release.

"We remain committed to working collaboratively on additional measures to reduce shop theft and violent incidents in our stores and to ensuring safe experiences for our customers and employees."

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