How can you prevent porch thefts during the holiday season?

Porch thefts have risen in Knoxville for three-straight years, but there are steps you can take to prevent it from happening
Porch thefts have risen in Knoxville for three-straight years, but there are steps you can take to prevent it from happening
Published: Nov. 28, 2022 at 6:44 PM EST
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - It’s supposed to be the season of giving, not the season of stealing; however, porch pirates are out there.

“We have received a few calls from individuals who say their items have been stolen from their porch,” Stacey Payne said, Executive Director of East Tennessee Valley Crime Stoppers.

According to data from the Knoxville Police Department, reported porch thefts in the city have risen each of the last three years.

  • 2019: 65
  • 2020: 84
  • 2021: 94
  • 2022: 77 (through Nov. 20)

KPD officials said porch thefts typically spike around this time of year too, but you can prevent thefts by doing a few small steps.

“I know it may sound a little strange,” Payne said. “But have it shipped to the store. Typically, the stores will do that for free.”

Payne said you could also ship it to a neighbor’s house if you’re not going to be home at the time of delivery, and they will.

“There have been times when that a porch pirate appears as soon as your item gets dropped; they’re right behind that delivery truck stealing your items,” said Payne.

She said your goal should be for your package to spend as little time as possible, if at all, on your porch.

But if your package does get stolen, there are steps you can take.

“The first thing they need to do is contact their local law enforcement agency and file that report,” Payne said.

She said security cameras are also a plus. They won’t prevent a theft, but they can help police catch a criminal if it does happen.

If you order through Amazon and the package does get stolen, officials say they will work with the customer to make it right. They also have an in-garage delivery service for Amazon Prime customers.