PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — As hundreds of millions of packages are on the move, package thieves are out too.
Statistics from Consumer Affairs show 23 million Americans will have their packages stolen this year.
Philadelphia police released surveillance video of recent package thefts in Manayunk. A man takes packages from the front steps of homes along the 4300 block of Dexter Street and the 200 block of Hermitage Street.
Police say he has a distinct limp and drives a dark-colored four-door sedan, possibly a Hyundai.
One couple on Leverington Avenue came up with a different idea to deter thieves.
“The package has a fishing line attached to a beer can on the other side of the door so if someone were to pull it, you would hear the beer can rattle,” said Jenn Nagel.
That’s what appears to have deterred a would-be thief from Nagel’s home on Monday afternoon; home surveillance video caught a man attempting to steal the decoy package filled with rocks.
“It’s a shame you can’t trust what you put on your porch,” she said.
Nagel and her boyfriend hatched the idea after they lost several packages to thieves, including one caught on camera just last week.
“It was clear as day that somebody walked up to our porch and just stole our package without even really thinking twice about it,” she said.
After realizing he won’t be successful, the man quickly walks away. But in separate incidents, others haven’t been so lucky.
“I had a bass guitar shipped from a friend in Montana that was stolen. He sent it as a surprise,” said Nicholas Mehalick.
Mehalick now gets his deliveries shipped elsewhere, but he says it’s a shame package theft is forcing neighbors to seek out places where they can safely pick up their items.
“I’m furious, it’s just such an invasion of one’s privacy,” he said.
Pennsylvania State Police released some tips for neighbors this holiday season, including requiring a signature at delivery or using mailbox lockers in the city.