DC holiday package thieves caught on camera

- Some 23 million people nationwide say they have had packages stolen from their homes, and it is a huge problem in our area during the holiday season.

After a series of packages recently went missing from an Adams Morgan condo building, residents reviewed their surveillance video and were shocked by the images they found.

“Three men took all the packages out of security camera view and into our stairwell where they just proceeded to totally go through them all, take everything and leave all of the packaging behind,” said one resident who did not want to be identified because the suspects have not been found. “Our security and our trust in the building was, kind of, definitely interrupted by this.”

The woman sent the images to Popville, a D.C. blog that routinely spreads the word about brazen package thefts around town.

The blog also posted pictures of an alleged package thief at 8th and K Streets in Northeast that residents dubbed Charlie Brown because of the shirt he wore.

A Brightwood resident submitted home surveillance video and wondered if he should confront the two package thieves since he was home at the time.

And residents on 14th Street in Northeast sent video to the blog of a masked thief taking a package off their porch. They said it was the fifth time they had items stolen from in front of their house.

These are crimes of opportunity as delivery trucks are packed this holiday season, leaving piles of gifts and goodies on doorsteps for hours until residents return.

Here are some tips to help prevent package thefts:

-- When you buy online, track your packages electronically or consider picking up your purchases in the store.

-- If you are not home during the day, consider sending packages to your office, or to a friend or family member’s house.

-- Ask shipping carriers if they will hold packages at their locations.

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