Security footage from a doorbell camera led New Castle County Police in November to charge a Newark man with stealing packages delivered to other people’s homes.
The case involving suspect Michael McKamey, a 58-year-old from Newark, is sadly all too common and of special interest during the holiday gift-buying season.
County police investigating thefts in Bellemoor and Maryland Park Apartments charged McKamey with two misdemeanor counts of theft under $1,500 and two misdemeanor counts of criminal trespass in the third degree.
He’s just one suspect. But concerns over porch pirates are nationwide.
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Surveys by Security.org for that last several years have consistently found that 40% to 45% of Americans have had a package stolen, and 17% to 22% have had a package stolen “recently.”
Safewise estimates “around $19.5 billion is lost to package theft every year. Its survey showed that 79% of Americans were victims of porch pirates in 2022, and that over half of them had more than one package stolen.”
You care whether what you have ordered is delivered.
Porch pirate defense
- Install a home security camera. Announce the camera and other devices, such as motion-detector lights, to potential porch pirates, who may or may not be scared away.
- Track packages via the tracking numbers that are emailed or texted to you. And then quickly follow through with a trusted neighbor to bring them inside.
- Have packages delivered to your work.
- If offered as a choice, schedule deliveries for times you are home.
- Require a signature. Yes, that’s a hassle for you.
- Buy a package lockbox or lock bag.
- Pay to have packages delivered somewhere, such as FedEx or UPS lockers or a post office box. An Amazon locker or Amazon Key Service is a free choice for merch bought at Amazon.
“Some of these tips seem like common sense,`” Security.org writes. “Yet not everyone follows them.”
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