Solink Stories: The case of the casual dining purse grab

November 26, 2018

Real cases of business success and loss prevention from our clients all over the world.

Location: Downtown Toronto

Crime: Guest to guest theft

In the summer of 2018, a group of four people met for dinner at a popular restaurant chain in downtown Toronto. Two of them, visitors from Brazil, had their purses stolen while they ate. Despite having a security team on site, nobody saw the theft occur.

It was a busy Saturday night; this location (whose name we’re omitting for obvious reasons) is right in the middle of the entertainment district, steps from TIFF, The Second City, the Rogers Centre, and the CN Tower. In fact, our two victims had been at the Tower just that evening. A great time to execute a theft, and an easy place to lose track of your purse.

The theft is noticed

When the women called for the bill and realized they didn’t have their bags, they asked the manager for help. In most situations, this would result in a frantic search and little action; fortunately for the women, this restaurant uses Solink.

Solink is a powerful platform for managing business operations, security, and loss prevention. Solink syncs a business’ security cameras with their point-of-sale so that any moment in time can be reviewed with data to give context. Solink finds and solves problems by making every action and transaction visible.

Technology helps find the theft

The restaurant used Solink search tools to pinpoint the time, date, and table. With just a few clicks, the restaurant was able to easily call up the footage for the evening.

Solink Stories Bp Theft Table Highlight
The victim’s table is circled in red. On the right of the image are the two suspects.

Solink’s motion search tool was key in pinpointing all movement that happened around the table in question. When Solink’s Motion Select tool is used, blocks of colour instantly pop up on the video timeline so the user can skip through to the key moments of footage. One alert stands out quickly, though: a man in a white ball cap walks by the table very closely, then walks by again a few seconds later. The behaviour is too unusual to be normal.

New Region Watch
The motion search feature makes it easy to see all movement at a specific location.

Thief not working alone

A woman in a red shirt is seen swinging by the victims’ table while the guests are laughing at a joke. She stops a few steps away and moves her head a bit. Is that a signal? White ball cap joins her, and then both sweep by the table one more time before hightailing it out of there. Some time later, the table receives the bill and the women notice their purses are gone.

The customers whose purses were stolen were visiting from Brazil and their passports were in those purses, meaning they missed their flights the next day. Without the assistance of the Solink platform, there would have been no way for the manager to pinpoint the theft without losing precious time managing the floor. The victims would have left feeling disappointed in their dining experience and the lack of help they were able to get from the restaurant.

Solink Stories Bp Purse Theft Suspects
The two suspects walking out the front door.

Swift, decisive action

Thanks to Solink, the restaurant was able to take action by providing quality footage to the authorities so that they could pursue the suspects with clear descriptions. Going back to that moment when both the man and his partner passed by the table, it was clear that he wrapped his jacket around one of the purses. His partner does the same thing to the other purse a second later. The movements are practiced and clean, and no one suspects a thing.

Solink’s sharing tools make it easy to clip and send footage of any incident. The restaurant was able to share the theft, not only with law enforcement, but also with neighbouring businesses to ensure that others would be watching for these thieves. The women weren’t able to recover their purses, but at least they got a little bit of justice on their last night in Canada, and the high value customer experience that comes with a speedy investigation.

To see how Solink’s innovative Motion Search features work, request a virtual tour of the platform here.