Louisville senator seeks felony charges for ‘porch pirates’ in proposed bill

Security video shows a person stealing a package.
Security video shows a person stealing a package.(WAVE)
Published: Nov. 25, 2021 at 4:49 PM EST
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - In Kentucky, packages delivered to your front door by UPS or Amazon don’t have the same legal protection as those delivered by the U.S. Mail.

A Kentucky state senator from Louisville is trying to change that.

Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the peak holiday shipping season. Which means there are even more opportunities for package thieves.

“I never thought somebody would come up to my porch,” WAVE 3 News Anchor Dawne Gee said.

Gee’s home security system captured video of a thief running up to her front door and snatching a package that had just been delivered.

The theft occurred even though her home has plenty of cameras, security signs, and a couple of large dogs barking inside of it.

“In my mind, if you’re stealing from someone’s porch, what comes next for you,” Gee said. “Will you break into someone’s home?”

“If we don’t do something I’m really worried it’s going to escalate,” State Senator David Yates (D-Louisville) said.

Yates has pre-filed a bill to make stealing packages a felony. Right now, he said packages are not given the same protection as U.S. Mail.

“This is about protecting your rights within your home, protecting you from thieves, and making sure that someone is held accountable for stealing from you,” Yates said.

If passed, he said the bill would give law enforcement another tool to break up package theft rings.

“I have people in my own building downtown that have to have items delivered to their work because they can’t have them delivered to their porch, and that’s just not right,” Yates said.

Gee said she now sends packages to the TV station instead of her front door. The whole experience has left her upset.

“How can people do that to others; it’s shameful,” Gee said.

Whether this bill gets passed into law or not, there are some ways you can protect yourself from package theft. You can have the packages shipped to your office or in some cases the shippers will let you hold them at their facilities.

The Kentucky Legislature can take up the bill when it goes back into session in January.

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WAVE 3 News Now(WAVE 3 News)

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