NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Dozens of people in North Little Rock say they don't feel safe shopping at their neighborhood grocery store at night.
THV11 looked into their concerns in an effort to find a solution.
Panhandling, shoplifting and a dark parking lot--that's how customers describe their shopping experience at the Kroger on Camp Robinson.
Many have taken to Facebook, calling it a scary place to go at night. There's even a plea to the North Little Rock Police Department for help.
“When you see businesses that have a lot of customers going in and out, it deters crimes, so I was shocked to see the amount of issues on social media,” Sgt. Brian Dedrick with the NLRPD said.
Sgt. Dedrick says they've been called to the area 444 times in 2017. But it's not all attributed to Kroger, there are several other businesses that share the same lot.
“Any time you have this many calls at a location it's alarming, but a lot of them are just everyday routine things that we deal with.”
As for Kroger, police have responded to calls for forgery, shoplifting, public intoxication and assault. While the store does have security through a private company, some customers say it's not enough and that there's too many panhandlers in the parking lot.
Sgt. Dedrick says often people don't report panhandlers, but businesses can always ask police to fill out a criminal trespassing form.
“If Kroger has an issue with someone spending time on the lot that's not a customer and they want them barred from their lot, then they can bar them from the lot and if they come back we'd make an arrest on it."
After THV11 brought their concerns to North Little Rock police, Sgt. Dedrick says they're now planning to make their presence known and help ease fears by starting a directed patrol from 6 to 11 p.m.
“In between answering calls and while they're writing reports they 'll sit on that lot and make a presence be known and that we're watching."
THV11 did reach out to Kroger for a statement but did not hear back.
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