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WASHINGTON, DC-Security measures put in place post-Sept. 11 have put retail property owners in a better position to protect customers in light of the recent area sniper attacks. Regardless of security precautions and news of a possible suspect, the shootings–which have occurred in the most common of destinations ranging from gas stations, to home improvement stores, to a school campus–have put security in commonly frequented locations at the forefront.

“There’s been a lot of heightened security for retail in general since September 11,” National Retail Federation spokesman Scott B. Krugman tells GlobeSt.com. “What retailers are doing is reassuring that everything possible is being done. At the same time, you have to remind the consumer to be aware of surroundings, but don’t live in fear.”

Location, in this crime wave, is a pivotal factor. Properties in close proximity to easily accessible highways surrounded by wooded or sheltered areas appear to be at particular risk due to the sniper’s penchant for long-range shots and quick getaways. “There are a lot of police cars near on-ramps to highways, so everyone knows they’re ready to go into action,” Krugman says. He adds that so far, he is unaware of any talk about erecting barriers or altering physical property characteristics to better shield customers from open roads. “If it came to that, that would be frightening.”

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