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Seattle-based Bartell Drugs, which is owned by Rite Aid, will close its location at 15th and Market, in an area north of downtown Seattle.

Rite Aid closes store in Seattle amid continued crime and violence

The retailer is simultaneously shuttering a location in Oregon for unspecified reasons

Another Rite Aid store is closing in Seattle as the retailer grapples with the city’s continued high crime rate and other factors.

Seattle-based Bartell Drugs, which is owned by Rite Aid, will close its location at 15th and Market, in an area north of downtown Seattle, on June 8, according to a report by media company Post Millennial.

Back in 2019, Bartell announced it would not be opening any more stores in Seattle due to theft and assaults on employees. Data on indicates the violent crime rate in the city reached a 15-year high in 2022. 

Kathi Lentzsch, CEO of Bartell, said at that time that its Seattle stores were having issues with repeat offenders, and that several staff members had ended up in the hospital due to injuries sustained during incidents within the stores. A few months later, Bartell’s flagship store in downtown Seattle was permanently taken out of service due to issues connected to crime. 

In 2022, a third store closed in the city’s Chinatown/International District. A reason was not provided, but at the time there were several reports of crime in the area.

As for the most recent Seattle closing, Rite Aid, based in Camp Hill, Pa., provided the following statement to Supermarket News:

“Like all retail businesses, we regularly review each of our locations to ensure we are meeting the needs of our customers, communities and overall business. A decision to close a store is one we take very seriously and is based on a variety of factors including business strategy, lease and rent considerations, local business conditions and viability, and store performance. We review every neighborhood to ensure our customers will have access to health services, be it at Bartell Drugs or a nearby pharmacy, and we work to seamlessly transfer their prescriptions so there is no disruption of services. We also strive to transfer associates to other Bartell Drugs or Rite Aid locations where possible.”

Rite Aid also closed a store in Roseburg, Ore. yesterday, according to reporting from KCBY CBS, a local station. Rite Aid, which has been struggling financially and has faced a number of lawsuits over the last few months, said it would be closing more than 60 stores that were deemed unprofitable in 2023.


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