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Police share advice on avoiding package theft during holidays

Here’s a message from Baltimore County Police:

If you have ever ordered clothing, jewelry, gifts, or any other merchandise by phone, computer, or mail, chances are those items were delivered straight to your home. Most deliveries DO NOT require a signature and are generally left at your front door even if no one is home to accept them.

These packages, which quickly catch the eye of potential thieves, offer criminals that “crime of opportunity”. Thieves looking to steal your packages will follow or watch for UPS, Fed Ex, US Mail, and other delivery service trucks so they can target your home after the parcels are delivered. See below recommendations:

  • Ask for a tracking number. Most major shipping companies offer this service at no charge. This number allows you to track your packages and notifies you when they will be delivered.
  • Request a “Signature Delivery Option”. This requires a signature when the packages are delivered and ensures they will not be left at the front door.
  • Request a specific drop off time and date when you will be home to accept your packages.
  • Arrange to have your packages held at the shipping service so you can pick them up.
  • Ask the delivery service to leave your packages at a side or back door. An enclosed porch where packages are out of sight is also a good option.
  • Have your packages delivered to your workplace or home of a relative or neighbor who will be there to accept them.
  • Ask to have your packages delivered to a participating retail store so you can pick them up at your convenience.
  • Ask a trustworthy neighbor to keep a “Watchful Eye” out for you packages. If they’re willing, ask them to safeguard your packages until you return home.
  • Leave a note for the carrier instructing them where to leave your packages (Ex: backdoor).
  • If your packages do not arrive as scheduled contact the sender immediately.
  • If you are going on vacation, place deliveries on hold until you return from your trip.

For questions, concerns or additional information, contact your precincts Outreach Team, or the Baltimore County Police Department’s Community Services Section, Ofc. Bryan Dietsch at 410-887- 5901.

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-Kristine Henry
-Kristine Henry
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