A Texas police department is taking matters into its own hands this holiday season to discourage modern-day Grinches swiping packages from people’s front porches.
“We’re getting more and more people getting packages delivered to their homes. So there’s an opportunity, people will take advantage of that opportunity,” Round Rock Assistant Chief Justin Carmichael told Fox 7.
Operation Front Porch began six years ago in December 2017 as a new way for residents to prevent package theft.
“The reason we started this program was because of the increase in package theft,” Carmichael said.
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Carmichael says Round Rock residents can send their packages to the department between now and Dec. 22.
“We hold them for three days and people can come in and pick up their packages during business hours,” Carmichael continued. “It’s been quite popular over the years. We’ve had over 1,100 packages sent to the police department.”
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To pick up a package, the owner must show a government-issued ID and proof of purchase.
In Kyle, Texas, the police department is encouraging residents to be aware of increased crime in the area and take simple steps to prevent robberies.
“You obviously don’t want to have these packages visible on the porch for an extended period of time,” Kyle Assistant Police Chief Pedro Hernandez told Fox 7.
Hernandez suggests using Dropbox with a lock, or signing up for notifications, so you know when your package is delivered to your home.
“If you can’t pick them up yourself, have someone, a trusted neighbor or family member, pick them up for you,” Hernandez added.
Having a doorbell camera can help catch porch pirates.
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“We have seen a lot of success in identifying suspects,” Hernandez said. “They’re captured on someone’s doorbell, camera or security surveillance camera. So they’ve been useful.”