LC Valley man turns tables on package thief
LEWISTON, ID —
They are the true Grinches of the holiday season... Package thieves. One local man took a drastic step in ending the spree of theft from his front porch, and it's all caught on camera. But Lewiston Police are saying, the tactic he used is not something others should replicate.
Billy Jenkins started noticing a trend around Halloween. "My wife and I had some Halloween decorations stolen off our front porch." He said they didn't think much of it. "After Halloween we put up our Christmas wreath and then we came home one day and it was gone," Jenkins said. Fed up he bought a security camera. "And then from there we just watched, and we started to see a lot of activity during the evening." He contacted Lewiston Police, but the images weren't clear enough to identify anyone. "Lewiston Police were going to do more patrols. And then one day this idea just came to me," Jenkins said. He decided he wanted to scare off a the would be thief. ”It was just a blank so it was going to make a loud noise." Jenkins said he took all the precautions he could think of to ensure the safety of the person.
He used a perimeter trip alarm, with a blank round. "Attached that to the bench underneath and used a piece of fishing line and connected it to the inside of the box so when the box was lifted it pulled the pin out and fired off that blank round," Jenkins explained. And it worked. "Obviously i wouldn't recommend anybody doing this,” Jenkins said, and LPD are taking the same stance. "We definitely don't recommend it, especially if someone was to get hurt from it, you could potentially be liable for criminal and civil actions against you.” Said LPD Lieutenant Jeff Klone.
He said so far this season they've only had one report of a package being stolen. "One report we've had where someone had some dog treats stolen that were in a package." But he said this doesn't mean it isn't happening. "So if they are happening, people aren't reporting it to us, which like I always say we want people to report even if it is just a five-dollar item."
Jenkins said he understands that risk... But he says he did his research. But he did add since the trick, there's been no sight of that person on his security camera. "None, he hasn't come by at all," Jenkins said.
Lt. Klone encourages anyone who has a package stolen, or even seed suspicious activity to report it. Even if they can't get an item back they can add patrols in the area to help deter the problem from happening in the first place.