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INDIANAPOLIS — Near northeast side resident, Patricia Stewart, is sounding the alarm in hopes others can learn from her mistakes.

Stewart is a local nurse who ordered some medical supplies for her sister living in a nursing home. However, those supplies went missing just 14 minutes after being delivered to her doorstep.

“[The packages] usually come pretty quickly but they didn’t come so I called the company and looked on their website just to see where it was and it said they had been delivered on October 26th,” said Stewart.

That is when Stewart said she checked her Ring doorbell camera and noticed two thieves had driven up her driveway and loaded the packages in their car.

“The rumors are they’re following these UPS or FedEx trucks,” said Stewart. “It’s unfortunate that this is happening because I was ordering stuff for Christmas and now I’m worried.”

“It is safe to say that we do see sometimes around this season an uptick of what we call porch pirates,” said IMPD Officer William Young.

Young said these porch pirates are thieves that target residents who use the convenience of online shopping. However, this Christmas IMPD is sharing tips on how you can prevent it from happening to you:

  • Ask a neighbor you trust to keep an eye out for your packages
  • Always track your package to make sure you’re home when it’s delivered
  • If you schedule deliveries frequently, make sure you switch up the drop off times to be less predictable
  • Lastly, require a signature for deliveries if you can

“You never know who may be casing your neighborhood so maybe instead of getting that package that you always get delivered at 12pm – maybe switch it to 4 o’clock in the evening,” said Young. “Maybe switch it to a time you think you’ll be home.”

Stewart said she filed a police report and shared her surveillance video with IMPD in hopes of catching the thieves who targeted her home.

“Nothing is more important than witnesses and folks coming forth if you see this happening in your particular neighborhood,” said Young.

“Hopefully they were sorry,” said Stewart. “They were shocked most definitely because they really didn’t get what they thought they were getting.”