In its 75-year history, In-N-Out will be closing a store for the very first time. 

In-N-Out Burger says they will be closing their Oakland, CA location on Mar. 24 due to a rampant increase in crime. While many stores have relocated in the past, this is the first store closure since the company was founded, nearly 75 years ago. 

The company reported a high number of car break-ins, robberies, property damage and theft. This has been a growing concern for customers and the store employees. In a statement on Jan. 31, In-N-Out CEO, Denny Warnick said that despite taking repeated steps to create safer conditions, our customers and associates are regularly victimized by car break-ins, property damage, theft, and armed robberies.”

This is the only location in the city of Oakland and has been there for nearly two decades. The store is near the Oakland International Airport, allowing for heavy customer traffic— while also attracting high crime rates. Despite the location being extremely profitable for the company, they continue to prioritize the safety of both their employees and customers. 

The company also noted that all employees at this location will have the opportunity to transfer to nearby locations or be offered a severance package. 

While the store closure may be unprecedented for the burger company, the closure falls in line with a recent trend in the city of Oakland. According to Oakland Police Department data, the crime rate in the city has increased by 21% since 2022, car break-ins have increased by 23% and car theft has increased by 45%. 

This data has been connected to an increased number of store closures within the city, specifically downtown Oakland. In September, Target announced that they would be closing not just one store in Oakland, but four stores near and around metropolitan areas across the country. This is after the stores reported over 100 retail theft calls to the police department. 

Like In-N-Out, Target states that the safety of their employees and customers is of the utmost importance. Despite their recent efforts, like implementing third-party security personnel, the company was not able to successfully combat the theft and other crimes within these four stores. 

While crime rates are increasing in Oakland, the citizens have taken it upon themselves to recall Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao, which many believe to be the problem behind the increased crime. 

A group called “Oakland United to Recall Sheng Thao” is being led by a former Alameda County Superior Court Judge, whom Thao had removed from Oakland’s Police Commission this past June. The group is placing the crime rate blame on Thao, who refused to call for a state of emergency on crime. The group also says that Thao is at fault for not replacing the police chief she fired last year and for not applying for the $276 million offered by Gov. Gavin Newsom for cities facing high retail crime. 

Oakland United to Recall Sheng Thao will begin collecting petitions in early February to put a recall on the ballot.  

As the community grapples with these challenges, the In-N-Out closure serves as a poignant symbol of the complex issues facing businesses and residents alike in the vibrant but troubled landscape of Oakland.