The District of Columbia saw 153 reports of package thefts in the first two weeks of December 2019, while the number was 213 for the whole month in November, according to data from the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).
At this pace, package thefts reported in December this year are likely to outnumber those happened in the same month of 2018, as well as become the month when most package thefts took place in the past five years.
Speaking to WAMU, a spokesperson for the department stated that they would only be able to put together a report on theft incidents until the end of the holiday period.
D.C. police have received a total of 2,141 reports for stolen packages in 2019, which is a 38.7 percent increase compared to last year’s figures.
MPD has warned D.C. residents against possible package thefts during the holiday season, giving some simple safety tips:
- Track deliveries online and confirm delivery has occurred. You can sign up for email notifications to track your packages from initial shipment to its arrival at your home, or the recipient’s address if you have the gift delivered directly.
- If you know a family member or neighbor will be home, ask them to pick up the packages as soon as they are delivered. Reward them with fresh baked cookies.
- Switch delivery location to work where it can be received by someone and not left on the porch.
- See if the post office or store the product is being shipped from can hold the package for pick up.
- The post office will allow your package to remain safe and secure for up to 30 days.