GIBSONVILLE, N.C. -- The Guilford County Sheriff’s Office asked for the public's help identifying a man wanted in connection with a package theft from a homeowner's porch. Investigators said on Tuesday, a man walked up to the porch of a home on Bethel Church Road in Gibsonville and stole a package. The incident was capture on surveillance video.
Wednesday, the sheriff's office announced an arrest in the case thanks to tips from the community. Detectives say 52-year-old Kernsie Shrewsbury, Jr. is the man suspected of taking the package.
Shrewsbury is charged with Misdemeanor Larceny.
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You can do the following to help keep your packages from being stolen:
- Require a signature for delivery, or have your purchases delivered to your workplace.
- Leave special instructions requesting your package be left at a side or rear door so it will not be as visible from the roadway.
- Utilize real-time tracking which is available from most major carriers.
- Have a family member or neighbor look out for the package and secure it upon delivery
A spike during the holidays
Investigators say these kinds of thefts happen year-round, but around the holidays, there's a spike, as more people get those precious packages - thieves will act fast if they see a box in plain view.
“You have people coming up in areas where a truck has gone through, that they saw go through. They'll see packages on the front porch and if no one comes out and gets it right away – they approach it,” said Colonel Randy Powers with the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office.
These are just a few of the tips law enforcement and community watch programs offer:
- Get packages delivered to the back or side of your house.
- Find a neighbor to keep a lookout - or pick it up once it gets there.
- And, if you're ordering from somewhere like Amazon, make sure to track your purchase.
“There’s tracking that some shippers provide,” said Bev Andrews. She and her husband Ed are in charge of the Old Starmount Neighborhood Watch Group, “We order a lot from Amazon and we get a notification when the package is delivered.”
Advancing technology helps ward off criminals too. Especially new video doorbells, which are making it harder for thieves to slip away unnoticed.
“[The device] will give you a warning on your phone when someone is close to your front door and you can watch them – it will video tape them and you can say to them - please get off of my property,” said Ed Andrews.
“Number one, It gives us good evidence for court and two, it might catch them before they dispose of the property,” said Colonel Powers.
As we approach Christmas, remember to turn off those lights or draw your shades when you're not home so criminals aren’t tempted by all the wrapped gifts under the tree.
Finally, if you do get a laptop, T.V., or something expensive, don't just set those boxes out on the curb after you open them. Police say that could make you a target after the holidays are over.