Valley resident hopes to expose porch pirates with new website

Dec 14, 2021, 4:35 AM | Updated: 2:05 pm
(Photo by Sébastien DUVAL / AFP via Getty Images)...
(Photo by Sébastien DUVAL / AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo by Sébastien DUVAL / AFP via Getty Images)

PHOENIX — One Valley resident is putting his foot down when it comes to porch pirates.

After a package was stolen from his front porch, Jacob Pritchett launched The Plank, a space where residents can report stolen packages.

Pritchett said he realized theft was happening to a lot of his neighbors, but there wasn’t a good process for the community to organize information.

“When dealing with the police department, I asked where I could send the video and the person I talked to on the phone was like ‘oh we don’t really have a way to do that.’ I was incredibly surprised by that,” Pritchett said.

Valley residents can go to the website and fill out a report on the incident, upload video footage and even offer a reward.

Pritchett will then create a blog post and give the porch pirate a name.

He said his goal is to bring awareness to the theft and anyone in Arizona can submit a report.

“I’m basically taking on the role of the reporter and editor here,” Pritchett said, also mentioning he sends out the newsletter with updates.

Pritchett said the COVID-19 pandemic caused people to start having more packages delivered to their homes.

According to a study done by CCTV Camera World, Arizona ranks No. 15 in the country for package theft.

“Maybe this wasn’t as big of a problem before, but now that everybody is getting all kinds of things delivered, from work computers to groceries, to essentials they are getting delivered to their house, this is something that’s more lucrative for thieves,” Pritchett said.

Pritchett explained that from talking to his neighbors, it seems like the thieves don’t feel like they’re going to be caught.

“They’re walking around, they’re stealing things in full view of security cameras, where they can see where they are and they’re not even bothering to cover their face, and this is at a time when it’s normal to wear a face mask places,” Pritchett said.

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Valley resident hopes to expose porch pirates with new website