How to stop porch piracy during holidays

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OWENSBORO, Ky. (WEHT) As the holidays approach and more packages are mailed nationwide, what can be done to prevent porch piracy happening to you?

Law enforcement and other agencies are working on stopping more thefts.

As more packages are delivered during the holiday season, more package thefts from front porches are reported.

“This time of year is when we hear about porch pirates more often,” said Susan Wright of the U.S. Postal Service.

“Particularly in the last year-and-a-half to two years, a lot of people have increased their online shopping, which increased the packages coming,” adds Ofc. Andrew Boggess of Owensboro Police Dept.
Both agencies say while porch piracies are reported year round, they do increase around the holidays

because of the higher number delivered. The USPS estimates up to 950 million packages will be delivered nationwide between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day.

“You better be looking out if you know packages are coming,” said Bonnie Glenn of Owensboro.
Officer Boggess says police patrol neighborhoods heavily and watch for thefts when they can, but they can happen anywhere. Doorbell cameras and video surveillance systems are one way people can protect themselves.

“We’ve been getting all the packages we’re supposed to be getting,” said Tom O’Bryan of Owensboro. It’s one way he makes sure no packages sent to his home get stolen.

“When you see a sign out there like Vivint, or if you see another sign out there on the other side, then they know that you have a security system,” he explained.

USPS says people can protect themselves by having mail held if you’re out of town or having special delivery instructions, such as leaving it with a neighbor.

“If you know a neighbor is home during the day and is willing to accept packages for you, you might want to use that delivery address,” says Wright.

State Senator David Yates of Louisville filed a bill in the Kentucky General Assembly for next year’s session that proposes adding theft of packages delivered by someone other than the postal service as a felony, same as those delivered by the USPS.

(This story was originally published on December 2, 2021)

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