TONAWANDA, N.Y. (WIVB) — Friday will mark the start of the holiday shopping season, but with that also comes an uptick in stolen packages.
The U.S. Postal Service says they will deliver more than 20 million packages a day from now until the end of the year – and thieves are taking notice. “Porch pirates” are criminals who steal packages from people’s porches, and police say they see an increase in stolen deliveries around the holidays each year.
“I don’t think the holiday season has even started already, and we’ve received three reports here in Tonawanda of thefts of packages off of porches,” said City of Tonawanda Police Captain Fredric Foels.
So how can you protect your precious packages from being poached by a porch pirate?
“Schedule a delivery when you’re home. Schedule a delivery to your work. Schedule a delivery to a neighbor or relative’s house – someone that can be trusted that’s home,” said Foels. “There are ways to offset those thefts.”
Foels also suggests using a video recording doorbell or setting up security cameras which are visible on your porch and can deter a potential porch pirate, or make it easier to track that person down.
According to Foels, it can be hard for police to find their suspect unless they have a description, which is why he said it’s important to keep an eye out for yourself, but also your neighbors.
“A lot of times, alert neighbors have solved many crimes,” he explained. “Just being out there and noticing when something doesn’t look right.”
And with the increase in using online services, police believe there will continue to be an increase in porch pirates.
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