TYLER, Texas (KETK) – The holiday season is the busiest for the United States Postal Service, whose employees can deliver up to 28 million packages a day.
With an increase in deliveries, comes a rise in package theft.
“This is a phenomenon that’s across the country, it’s not a daily occurrence but it’s becoming more frequent than what we’d like,” says Don Martin with the Tyler Police.
Several items stolen include expensive Christmas gifts and holiday decorations, leaving families empty-handed for the holidays.
Martin suggests having your package delivered to your work address instead of your home to prevent leaving it unattended for long periods of time.
He also recommends having it delivered to a trusted friend or relative who may be home more often.
Experts also suggest selecting the option that requires the deliverer to get a signature from the recipient as an extra precaution.
Lastly, homeowners can set up doorbell cameras to monitor their property.
“We’re actually catching them on video stealing these packages, suspects need to be aware of that,” Martin said. “Suspects need to be aware that it’s not always what it seems to be, sometimes those things are booby-trapped. Sometimes those things are police-related packages and guess what, now we’re tracking you, so our suggestion is don’t do it.”
According to a new law signed by Gov. Abbott, in the state of Texas, stealing between 1 – 9 boxes is an automatic class A misdemeanor, and between 10 and 29 packages is a state jail felony.
The sentence continues to increase depending on the number of packages.