ATLANTA, Ga. – A bill under consideration in Georgia would strengthen penalties against so-called “porch pirates” who steal packages from doorsteps.
House Bill 954 would make such thefts a felony punishable by a minimum of a year in prison. The maximum penalty would be five years.
Republican Rep. Bonnie Rich, who filed the bill, called porch piracy an “epidemic,” according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The same penalty would apply to anyone convicted of possessing more than 10 pieces of mail or mail from three or more different mailboxes or addresses.
These types of thefts are typically misdemeanors; Georgia law requires stolen property to be valued at more than $500 for it to be considered a felony.
Michigan passed a similar law last year that includes a penalty of up to 5 years and a $1,000 fine for repeat offenders.