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Mesquite, TX – December 18, 2019 – The Mesquite Police Department is offering tips to local residents to help them remain safe this holiday shopping season. Packages delivered to a doorstep can easily become a target for thieves. And online purchases from sites that require personal delivery have increasingly been linked to fraud, theft and violent crimes. Here are some tips to avoid becoming a victim of a crime of opportunity.
“Porch pirates” are a common threat this time of year. A porch pirate is someone who drives around following delivery trucks or drives around a neighborhood looking for packages to steal off your doorstep.
Lt. Stephen Biggs with the Mesquite Police Department said, “Unfortunately this is the prime season for package thieves. An easy way to keep your holiday packages from being stolen is to require a signature at the time of delivery or to entrust a neighbor to pick it up for you.”
Biggs states that customers can also have the package delivered to a neighbor’s house if they know they’re going to be home or to their place of work.
Another common crime this time of year are exchanges from online transactions, gone wrong. The Mesquite Police Department has a Safe Exchange Zone outside the Mesquite Police Department, 777 N. Galloway Avenue. It is a safe location people can use while participating in internet sales this holiday season. The zone is monitored by 24-hour video surveillance and is in front of the Police Station lobby where an officer is on duty 24 hours a day.
Lt. Biggs said, “We encourage all residents to use the Safe Exchange Zone when meeting someone for an internet transaction. It’s a safe, public place where they can complete their business.” Biggs also stated the zone is a safe place to meet people for child custody exchanges.