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  • Writer's pictureAlexandra Theodorou

Supermarket Burglary Near Paddepoel Raises Concerns About Juvenile Crime


A 16-year-old boy, armed with what appeared to be a firearm, threatened a supermarket cashier at an Albert Heijn near Paddepoel on Monday night.


AH Supermarket © Alexandra Theodorou

A store cashier at the Albert Heijn Eikenlaan, Hanna, recounts the experience of her coworkers who claim the assailant made off with €2,000. The boy is said to have been wearing a black jacket with gloves, a black-coloured face covering with a mouth mask, and possibly dark sweatpants with a pink stripe from the French football club PSG.


However, the details of the robbery are still under investigation. This supermarket burglary highlights and intensifies the growing concern of the local community with the seeming surge in juvenile crime.


Local resident Lilli, who has been living in Paddepoel since 2019, expresses her shock and concern about the rising trend of violence in the area. “Since moving here in 2019, someone was shot, someone was stabbed and there’s been a lot of break-ins,” she says.


Despite this, she expresses a general sense of security and a reluctance to change her routine in any way, noting that Paddepoel is a nice area with many families living there.


Recent Youth Crimes Map in Groningen (30 Days) © Alexandra Theodorou

Statistical insights from Central Groningen reveal that 1.87 percent of young people are registered as police suspects, with property crimes like shoplifting being the most common offense among both boys and girls. The Youth Crime Monitor highlights a recent 12 percent increase in underage suspects in 2022, with a significant rise in juvenile girls involved in shoplifting.


Groningen Police Station © Alexandra Theodorou

A Symptom of Youth


“Everyone steals in Albert Heijn. I know a couple of people that do this. It’s not hunger or anything, more the tingle of adrenaline,” Lilli says. Although she adds that in most cases life is just too expensive for people.


For Lilli, the incident becomes emblematic of broader concerns around juvenile crime in the region and a symptom of youth.


"When you’re young, you’re very curious and not afraid of things or consequences...he probably just didn’t think it through," says Lilli. 


While the city of Groningen is generally considered to be safe, recent events involving several violent crimes have raised questions about the factors contributing to the increase in criminal activities, particularly involving young individuals.

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