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California police use high-tech crime-fighting tool to catch porch pirates

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Posted at 2:48 PM, Dec 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-23 15:59:40-05

Police in California are taking action against thieves as Christmas quickly approaches.

They leave packages with tracking devices in front of houses to catch porch pirates.

"We're going to a prearranged residence with the homeowner's consent. They are a prior victim of either mail theft or package theft. We place the package at the front door, and we wait for the signal to go off," said Anaheim Police Officer Andrei Bratiloveanu.

Officers are delivering boxes with GPS trackers inside an unmarked black van to bait the thieves.

The package is placed at a house that's been targeted twice already.

The box contains iPhones and other popular gifts.

Then, officers sit back and wait.

"Dispatch will get the notification that the package has moved, and they're able to relay to officers at what speed and which direction the package is going in," said Officer Bratiloveanu.

Once the package is taken, an alarm sounds on dispatchers’ computers.

Officers receive notifications on their cell phones.

A man was tracked and arrested at a park as he opened the package.

Police say they will use the high-tech crime fighting tool all year.