'I was furious' - Hitchin businesswoman chases after shoplifters to get her Stone Roses T-shirt back
PUBLISHED: 11:00 30 April 2015 | UPDATED: 11:24 30 April 2015
A Hitchin businesswoman fed up of having stock shoplifted from her store chased a thief who tried to snatch a cult T-shirt from outside her town centre premises.
Jess Princeton, right, who owns the vintage clothes and accessories shop Rosita Lollipop in Paynes Park, sprang into action when she was alerted that a young couple had just walked off with a Stone Roses T-shirt.
She told the Comet: “I’ve had a few things stolen recently and I’d just had enough of it so I started running after them without thinking.
“I caught them up and I shouted: ‘I think you’ve got something of mine.’
“They were a bit shocked to be confronted like that. Luckily the girl just threw it back to me.
“I don’t hate them. I was just so furious and full of adrenaline I didn’t really think about the fact the couple could have confronted me – thankfully they didn’t.
“It probably wasn’t the smartest thing to do – but I’ve worked so hard and put so many hours into my business, and have had other things stolen recently I just thought: ‘Enough’s enough’.
“I felt bad I’d shouted as I’m not a horrible person – but we all work hard for a living and I was just fed up.
“It’s not the fact I could have lost the T-shirt – much as I like the Stone Roses – it was the principle.
“I’ve had a lovely vintage leather jacket stolen recently and a necklace too.
“I’ve also had someone put £500 worth of my stock into a vintage pram and brazenly walk out. They were actually stopped in town with the price tags hanging off.
“If you look at our www.rositalollipop.com website you can see the lovely vintage clothes we sell and it’s really annoying to have some of them shoplifted.
“There’s a real sense of community in Hitchin and it’s been nice to have had messages of support from people about this.
“My business is mine. No bank or partner has funded me, I’ve done it all myself – so I just think I’d had enough of people stealing things from me.
“I told my husband who was a bit shocked but I was just pleased I got the T-shirt back – and celebrated with a nice a hot mug of cocoa afterwards!”
Hitchin town centre manager Keith Hoskins said: “I’d encourage all shops and businesses in Hitchin to join the Shopwatch scheme which is also a way of being in contact with each other in cases such as this.
“We’ve also had CCTV cameras installed in West Alley so potential shoplifters should beware.”