Thieves target packages left on porches

December 16, 2017 GMT

GREENWICH — As parcel deliveries escalate as the holiday season picks up, Greenwich police are warning the public to be vigilant about thieves who target packages left on porches and in entryways.

In one recent case, a homeowner on the 50 block of Sound Beach Avenue reported the theft of a parcel Tuesday afternoon. Three slippers in the parcel were taken, according to the police report.

Thieves who follow delivery trucks, then make off with packages, are a persistent and growing problem during the Christmas season. The larceny trend has earned them the name “porch pirates.”

“It happens in Greenwich, just as it does everywhere else in the United States,” said Greenwich police spokesman Lt. John Slusarz.

He said the recent theft should be a reminder to local residents to keep an eye out for suspicious behavior when delivery trucks come through the neighborhood.

“If it looks out of place, give us a call,” the lieutenant said. “We want everyone to have a nice holiday.”

A recent study found that 23 million Americans have had packages stolen from their homes before they could open them. With more and more Americans shopping online, the number of thefts have been increasing.

A list of suggestions for consumers was sent out by Connecticut State Police:

* Track the package. This will give you an indication of when it will arrive so you can plan accordingly.

* Signature required upon delivery will prevent your items from being left out in plain view.

* Ask a friend, neighbor or family member to receive it for you if you know they’ll be home.

*Pick up at the shipping/receiving facility such as FedEx or UPS stores.

* Instruct the delivery service to leave the package around the rear of your residence or underneath a porch.