Shoppers react to latest crime at Oak Park Mall, where police have taken proactive measures against criminals

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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- Overland Park Police are still searching for a man who they say shoplifted, and assaulted three undercover officers at Oak Park Mall.

But police do have one suspect - Letrina Newsome - in custody.

Newsome appeared in front of a judge via video conference Monday afternoon. Police say she is from Mississippi, and she has refused to cooperate with them.

Shoplifting has gotten so bad that Overland Park Police have regular undercover operations to catch those would-be-thieves.

Last month, the operation - which was in its fourth month - had 14 arrests.

It's just the latest crime at the shopping center.

Since 2015 --- Oak Park Mall has also had reports of carjackings and gunmen, not to mention theft in the retail area.

Barbara Summers was shopping across the street from Oak Park Mall on Monday. She had her keys between her fingers.

"When I'm in a parking lot, like this," she said, "I'm always looking to see how parked next to me, or who's coming out of a store. I just think that all of us have to be very much alert as to what our surroundings are."

"I wasn't surprised," to hear it on the news last week, she said, "because I figure things like that go on over there. I mean, those are the stories that we get."

"You just hear stories of things happening at the mall," she added.

Crystal Dau just moved to the area this summer, and she doesn't have the same experience.

"It's a great place for whatever shopping you might need to get done," said the new transplant. "It always has, basically, anything I might need."

Or, anything a criminal might need.