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Special Delivery | Harris Co. deputies are looking for porches to set 'bait' in sting operations targeting package thieves

“It’s like the real thing. It’s got all the stickers. All the labels,” said investigator Javier Ureña of the FedEx boxes used in sting operations across Harris Co.

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas — If there’s one thing we can all probably agree on, it’s that the people who steal packages off porches are among the worst of the worst. If you’re fed up and frustrated with your deliveries being targeted and stolen, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office is ready to partner with you. 

For the second year in a row, deputies are running undercover sting operations. They’re looking for Harris County residents to help them plant the bait: unassuming FedEx delivery boxes that have sophisticated GPS trackers inside.

Video produced by the Harris County Sheriff’s Office shows how the sting operations work.

“It’s like the real thing. It’s got all the stickers. All the labels,” said investigator Javier Ureña of the FedEx boxes used in sting operations across Harris County. “We’re trying to be proactive."

But the Harris County Sheriff’s Office deputy needs your help.

“Reporting every porch pirate incident or every theft of package, it helps us track,” said Ureña.  

It helps them keep track of which streets and neighborhoods are being targeted.

“We’re trying to catch these people,” who are often caught on camera quickly getting away with stolen packages. 

Holidays this December are driving up deliveries. The U.S. Postal Service is anticipating the delivery of 950 million packages this holiday season. Unless you grab your package quickly, or your delivery is hidden out of plain sight, that box on your doorstop could grab a crook’s attention.

“You should call, because that one person could be the target of several homes,” said Ureña.

It’s what deputies discovered about a year ago in Katy’s Westlake subdivision.

Help from a U.S. Postal Inspector can drive the theft up to a federal crime. So if your package is stolen, report it to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office by calling 713-221-6000.

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