Christmas presents and deliveries have been a mess in Canada this year. First, there was the Canada Post rotating strike, which is expected to delay Christmas deliveries this year, meaning many Canadians may not get their presents in time. Now, thieves are actually stealing people's Christmas deliveries from their doorsteps, proving people can be actual garbage.
In multiple Canadian cities, there have been numerous reports of people stealing packages from homes this holiday season. In Edmonton, officers have investigated 17 delivery thefts just in the month of November, the Edmonton Police Service announced in a news release.
There may be many more that have not been reported to the officials. The Edmonton Police are now warning Canadians to be careful of the holiday deliveries getting stolen from their homes and to take preventative measures.
"As the popularity of online shopping grows, so to does the number incidents reported to police related to parcel theft," explained Staff Sgt. Darryl Fox, EPS Southwest Division, in the news release. "Some companies will even offer their customers gift-wrapping services, which makes it pretty obvious for thieves to identify."
There have been several different ways in which thieves have pulled off their Christmas package heists in Edmonton. According to the police, some suspects followed delivery trucks and stole the packages once they've been delivered. One man was even seen stealing a delivery from their very own neighbor's porch.
Edmonton is not the only place that's seen Christmas thieves. In another Albertan city, Calgary, a couple even saw a thief stealing their packages on their security camera. The victims, Jamie Frost and Hayley Ezra, told CTV News about their experience. They had ordered several items online and on Wednesday, December 5th, Frost returned home to find a delivery parcel that was opened.
The couple caught their thief on camera. "We kind of assumed that it was a damaged parcel at first. When we started to go through and noticed that stuff was actually missing, we pulled up the footage and what do we see; a porch pirate," said Erza. In the security footage, they saw someone walk up and take their package five minutes after it was delivered.
The thief even went through the delivery and stole the most expensive items, Ezra said. The couple reported the incident to the police and handed over the video evidence as well, who are now investigating the theft.
So how can you prevent your holiday deliveries from being stolen? The Edmonton Police have some advice. "When shipping items purchased online, it is recommended that you use the delivery tracking app available at time of purchase, and do your best to have someone at home to receive the gift," said the police in their news release.
"If you’re unable to be at home on the day and time of delivery, customers may be able to contact the shipping company and ask them to deliver the item to your back porch or to another address".
The Calgary Police also had some tips to make sure your package doesn't get stolen. "You can speak with a trusted neighbour and ask them to look after your package and remove it when it’s delivered," the police told CTV News. "You can have a package delivered to a workplace where you know people are going to be. You also have the option to have it delivered to a store for a pickup at a later date.”