Porch pirates taking advantage of online deliveries in metro Detroit

Posted: 10:10 PM, Nov 29, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-29 22:10:18-05

Now that two of the busiest shopping days of the year are behind us, packages will start arriving at doorsteps all across the nation.  

But what if you're not home? How do you protect your items from so-called porch pirates, taking things big and small from right under your nose?

"People are expecting packages, shipping packages, so you have these guys actually out preying," Anthony Smith, a recent victim of porch pirates, said.

Christmas gifts and online purchases will start arriving at your doorstep. It's important you plan for where you want the delivery driver to put your package.

"I saw the delivery man deliver the package.  Looked on the porch a few minutes later and the package was nonexistent, I thought it was brought into the house. When I came home, I found out there was no package," Smith said.

On Wednesday two men were caught stealing packages from a porch in Berkley.  They were caught on a doorbell camera and later arrested by police.

"I was really shocked like WOW my package is gone," Smith said.

Anthony recently had his package stolen from his front porch, a $200 air fryer.  He says he knew better than to have it delivered to his front porch.

"I’m going to look at some alternatives.  Even though I have some security, that don’t work, you still have to take additional steps," he says.

There are some things you can do to better protect your packages: 

Sign up for Amazon Key. It’s a smart lock and security camera that allows a delivery driver to put your package inside your front door.

Ask your neighbor. 

Have your packages delivered to your office.  

Get security cameras or sign up for delivery alerts, notifying you where and when a package was delivered.  

For Smith, it was a hard lesson learned.

"I was very shocked and surprised, and when I saw the guy run off with it, I was really floored. I mean I was devastated, honestly, because it’s an invasion of your personal space," Smith said.

Police are reminding everyone if you see something suspicious be sure to report it to your local police department.