Beware of Porch Prowlers

How big of a problem is package poaching in Fairfield?


Evelyn Hogarth, Staff Writer

With Christmas approaching, Amazon, Apple, and thousands of other retailers are making daily deliveries to hundreds of doorsteps nationwide.

But, will your package be there when you get home?

Package pirates have been a problem for years, stealing consumers’ packages right from their doorsteps, often in broad daylight.

So how big of a problem is this in Fairfield? Fairfield Police officer, Walter Burke, who has been a patrolman for 10 years, said that, “It is a problem this time of year,” and that the Fairfield Police Department gets “around three calls per shift.”

With at least 9 calls about package poaching a day, UPS drivers are on alert.

According to Burke, poachers often follow the UPS trucks, sometimes in cars or on bikes.

Last Wednesday, there was a poacher following a UPS truck and the driver called FPD to report the suspicious vehicle following his truck.

When there is a call, the police sends one car to patrol the street, and another to the area of the call.

Although many porch prowlers get caught or intercepted each day, they are very difficult to catch. The police have to catch the person with the package in his or her hands or in his or her car.

So how can consumers be protected?

Burke said that getting packages delivered to where you work, or to someone’s house you know will be home, is a way to keep your packages safe.

Another way is to install a doorbell with a camera, which video-records through the doorbell.

There is also a UPS app, that sends you an alert to your smartphone when your package is delivered. This is a good way to know for sure if the package was stolen.

So, who’s most at risk of having their packages being poached in Fairfield?

Officer Burke said that houses which are closer together and closer to the street are more at risk than those in places such as Greenfield Hill, which are further apart, and set further back from the road.

Be vigilant and keep your packages safe from those package pirates!