London, May 29 : Gabe Fidanque could never have imagined in wildest of his dreams that his much successful, though weird method, to deter shoplifters could actually get him a jail warning.
Fidanque, owner of Wagon Wheel Liquors in Colorado, was losing 1,000 dollars per month, thanks to shoplifters. But later he found an effective solution to curb the shoplifting - by asking the offenders to hand over one shoe or he would call the police.
"I give them the choice. I say, 'I'm either going to call the cops or you give me one of your shoes.' They're too humiliated to come back and ask for their shoe, and that also means they won't steal again," The Telegraph quoted him, as telling the Durango Herald.
But now, the practice might take its toll on him, as officers have advised him that his actions would amount to felony robbery, while shoplifitng is a mere misdemeanour.
Durango police Captain Micki Browning warned that the shoe method was illegal.
"I would suggest that he find a different option that doesn't involve giving up property. What's the difference between him saying, 'Give me and I won't call the police' or 'Give me your shoe?'" she said.
Fidanque has agreed to obey the police warning, and is willing to return the shoes he has confiscated to their owners, if in case he actually finds them.
"It was a good try, but I'll have to figure something else out. It's not worth jeopardizing my business," he said.