BERNALILLO COUNTY, N.M. (KRQE) – Eight people were arrested during a counter-theft operation in the Seven Bar Ranch area around Cottonwood Commons Thursday, the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office confirmed Friday. BCSO’s operation was the department’s latest effort to crack down on retail theft across the city.

The eight arrests were for shoplifting, felony warrants, misdemeanor warrants, receiving and transferring stolen motor vehicle, probation violations, and criminal trespass, BCSO said. Deputies recovered $600 worth of retail merchandise and returned it to the businesses. One stolen vehicle was also recovered and three attempted retail thefts were stopped.

BSCO said more west side businesses reported a rise in retail crime and shoplifters are using the Northwest Transit Center or bosque to get away. “There are some unhoused persons, persons maybe staying family and stuff. So they’re stealing what they need, same old things. health and beauty, merchandise, and even maybe some cell phones too every now and then,” said a member of the sheriff’s office.