Don’t let the Grinch, or a thief, steal Christmas


WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) – ‘Tis the season for holiday shopping, or it’s about to be if you haven’t started. With that comes the stacks of packages on front porches for those who shop online.  

As the Post Office said, criminals are opportunistic. So, a big box on your front porch seems like easy pickings for them. However, there are simple ways to make sure these Grinches don’t steal Christmas before you even have a chance to wrap that perfect present.

We don’t want anyone’s holiday season to be ruined by a package being stolen.

Susan Wright, Spokesperson, USPS of West Virginia

The simple way to do that is to not leave those packages outside, in plain sight, unattended. 

Many people are opting to buy things online as opposed to going to the store. There are a lot more packages being sent to homes year-round, not even just around the holidays.

Deputy Chief Ken Prager, Wheeling Police Department

Unfortunately, the porch pirates are already out and about. In Wheeling, police said there have been two reported package thefts since mid October. Last year, nine were reported between Halloween and the New Year.

So, how can we stop it?

Maybe ask a neighbor who is home when you’re not to pick up deliveries, or ship to your place of work. If you use USPS, they explain you can have your packages held for pickup. 

You can actually customize delivery. So, you could say ‘please place this package at the garage door on the side’ or something like that so that it’s not visible from the street.

Susan Wright, Spokesperson, USPS of West Virginia

Police also suggest some type of camera system. That way even if, despite your best efforts, a theft does happen it’ll help catch the culprit. Most departments, like Wheeling Police, have a way to register those cameras. 

This simply just acknowledges that you do have a camera in that general area and that if there did happen to be a crime committed we could reach out to you to identify the suspects.

Deputy Chief Ken Prager, Wheeling Police Department

Although being a tattle tale could get you in trouble with St. Nick, in this case you get a pass. If you see something, let the authorities know. 

Just like any time of the year, just if you see anything suspicious please report that to the police department.

Deputy Chief Ken Prager, Wheeling Police Department

If you live in Wheeling and have security cameras that you’d like to register with the police department, visit

Copyright 2022 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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