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Police conduct operation to catch ‘porch pirates’

SALT LAKE CITY — Just before the holiday season, Salt Lake City Police lead a two-day operation to capture “porch pirates” cruising around people’s homes.

Police placed decoy packages around town.

“We hoped the packages would be stolen,” said Sgt. Brandon Shearer.

He added that, in this operation, no decoy packages were stolen, but the thieves took other packages instead.

Police have leads according to Shearer, “through some surveillance video that homeowners had of other packages that were stolen in the city, and of some people that were committing the thefts.”

Shearer says officers worked with U.S. Post Office inspectors, the Utah Attorney General’s Office, Amazon and Ring home security during the operation.

When receiving a package, police offer the following tips:

· Track your packages; if possible, be home when packages are delivered.

· Have packages delivered to a neighbor or business where someone can accept the package.

· Have a neighbor watch for packages and place them in a safe location to be picked up later.

· If you don’t have somewhere safe to have the package delivered, ask for it to be held at the shipper’s facility for pick-up.

Shearer says detectives will also work with pawn shops to recover stolen packages, but people must make themselves less of a target.