Two break-ins in 12 months calls for council action

John Caio at the front of the store he has called home for 39 years. Photo source: Stephanie Vigilante

Since the doors first opened at Impulse Fashions 39 years ago, retailer John Caio has shared many milestones with customers, staff and family.

His store in the Puckle St Precinct has celebrated everything from the birth of his grandchildren, to the introduction of Havaianas and the many store birthday celebrations that are never shy from an outright party.

Some of the more somber milestones have also occurred in that time, such as the 10 break-ins he has experienced.

“Most incidences are ‘snatch-and-grab,’” says Caio.

However, as a road-facing shop front, many of the stores break-ins have also been a result of car ramming through the front window.

In the past 12 months, there have been two incidents of this nature and for many years Caio has pushed the council to implement bollards at the front of the shop for prevention.

“[Larger retailers] have bollards at every window and yet I have pushed the council for years.”

Only since his most recent incident – where police became involved, has the council finally approved the installation.

“I still have to wait until the end of financial year for the councils budget to include the new bollards.”

In the meantime, Caio has implemented his own means of protection against these crimes by installing a new trellis door behind the front window.

For Caio, the days after a break in means lower levels of trading as stock needs to be accounted for and clean ups occur whilst they try to operate as normal.

“If nothing is stolen, you go back to normal,” says the shop owner.

Previous to the most recent two incidents, Impulse Fashions hasn’t been broken into for 10 years.

Property and deception offences remain a significant issue in the Moonee Valley community with the highest crime rate compared to all other criminal offences.

Retailers are urged to ensure appropriate insurance and monitored CCTV is installed to help prevent these crimes.

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