Police use dummy packages to nab porch thieves

The fake packages are equipped with GPS tracking devices

Dummy packages are disguised as real packages and left on porches to nab thieves. Photo by WoodysPhotos for Shutterstock.
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Dummy packages are disguised as real packages and left on porches to nab thieves. Photo by WoodysPhotos for Shutterstock.

The Bayonne Police Department (BPD) has recently launched an initiative to deter package thefts occurring throughout the city, especially during the holiday season.

The BPD has utilized “dummy” packages equipped with GPS tracking devices to assist in catching package thieves. The initiative is being overseen by the Bayonne Police Community Oriented Policing (C.O.P.) Unit in coordination with the Bayonne Police Detective Bureau.

The initiative involves officers placing the “dummy” packages on porches or stoops at random locations as if they had been recently delivered. Officers then set up surveillance of the package and wait for a thief to strike.

“The BPD prides itself on providing a safe environment where all citizens of Bayonne can enjoy the quality of life they deserve,” Captain Eric Amato said in a press release. “Any incident that disrupts this will not be tolerated and the Bayonne Police Department will do its part to assure that the citizens of Bayonne feel safe.”

As a result of this initiative, the BPD arrested two package thieves.

Dummy packages are a smart idea

On Dec. 15, 53 year-old Rose Doria of Jersey City was taken into custody from the area of 58th Street and JFK Boulevard. Her arrest came after she was observed behaving suspiciously in the area of the dummy package, police said.

As officers approached her and spoke with her, they observed her to be in possession of two Amazon packages not addressed to her. The on-scene investigation led to the confirmation that Doria had just stole the packages off the porches of two nearby residences.

Doria was charged with two counts of theft and the packages were ultimately returned to their rightful owners.

On Dec. 16, 26 year-old Luis Santana of Columbus, Ohio was taken into custody from the area of 57th Street and Avenue C. He was arrested after being observed by officers removing the dummy package from a porch of an area residence.

During the search incident to arrest, Santana was found to be in possession of two electric hair trimmers, later determined to be shoplifted from the Rite-Aid at 1097 Broadway by Santana just prior to stealing the dummy package.

Santana was also found to be in possession of narcotic paraphernalia and a hypodermic syringe. He was charged with theft, shoplifting, possession of narcotic paraphernalia, and possession of a hypodermic syringe.

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