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Downtown neighborhood prepares early for "porch pirates"

Porch Pirates.JPG

It’s the time of year when deliveries ramp up. FedEx, UPS, and USPS combined expect to ship more than two billion packages during the holiday season.

When online shopping increases, so does the chance a package could be stolen right from your doorstep.

It happened a year ago in Hampton Park Terrace when people came home to emptied packages with the addresses torn off.

“That's terrible to take people's things,” a neighbor told us. “The stuff today was obviously a gift.”

David Ellsworth lives one street over. He has never had a package stolen but said it has happened to some of his neighbors.

“There are a lot of front porches here which are good targets for people,” he said. “I just think it's an area where there is a lot of people walking around. In other parts of town it's not as walkable as here so it doesn’t look as obvious when people are walking around.”

A year later, many of the homes now have doorbells equipped with camera systems.

Other homes have handwritten notes instructing delivery drivers to hide packages.

“Put behind a chair or plant so it's not so obvious from the street,” said Ellsworth.

Ellsworth said they also rely on their neighbors when they aren’t home.

“We will have a neighbor come by and make sure they pick up the package so it isn't on the porch for a long time,” he said. “We watch out for each other.”

SHORR Packaging Corporation surveyed 1,000 consumers and found more than 31% had packages stolen after delivery.

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