TWO police officers were injured and five people arrested after a fight in Wrexham town centre.
An officer had gone to arrest a man on suspicion of shoplifting after he was spotted on CCTV near Market Street at about 5.30pm on Sunday.
But on arrival the officer was met by a group of five men.
Back-up was called but a fight broke out with police, resulting in two officers receiving minor injuries.
One man was arrested in connection with the suspected theft and four others for affray.
Speaking yesterday, Wrexham town centre inspector Mark Williams promised a heavier police presence to try to halt a rise in shoplifting in Wrexham town centre.
He said: “There has been a high number of shoplifiting over the last seven days.
“There have been 22 incidents this week, which is higher than normal.”
Insp Williams said the number of shoplifters in a week was normally in the mid-teens.
But he said more police would now be visible in the town centre shopping areas to make sure thieves are deterred.
Insp Williams said: “The town centre team will be working in the town centre doing high visibility patrols and targeting shoplifters.”
Kevin Critchley, Eagles Meadow manager and town centre forum chairman, said he was concerned about the rise in thefts.
He said: “We are obviously not pleased with any increase in reported shoplifting, which is a soft term for theft.
“Any increase is worrying because the police have been managing to keep it down.
“But I am sure the police are looking at where and why it has increased and how they can deal with it.
“Theft affects retailers, the town and any potential retailers coming in, but it is not across the board because not every shop has problems with shoplifting.
“The cost of retail crime is vastly more than the cost of the item stolen because stores then have to take security measures such as CCTV and security staff.”