Johnston Police warn residents to watch for 'porch pirates'


While Johnston Police search for those responsible for several car thefts and break-ins, they’d like to remind residents to be on the lookout for “porch pirates.”

“‘Tis the season to be jolly and not be the victim of porch pirates,” according to a press release distributed by Johnston Police Chief Joseph P. Razza. “Supply chain issues have people shopping for that special gift earlier than ever, and porch pirates have an eye out for your home deliveries. If left unprotected, your packages may become the target of thieves.”

Razza said package theft reports dropped off dramatically last year during the pandemic. The year prior, however, package thefts were rising exponentially. This year, with the pandemic waning, the potential for criminal theft of packages from Johnston’s front porches may be ripe.

“Since the advent of Amazon, even more items delivered to people’s residences,” Razza said Monday. “It’s not uncommon in other jurisdictions as well. This year, we wanted to get out in front of it. We want to tell residents to be mindful and cognizant of their property.”

Razza recommends following several easy steps that can help ensure packages are safely delivered and received:

  • Have packages delivered to your work, or to the home of a relative or friend that you know will be home.
  • Have your package held at the local post office for pickup.
  • Take advantage of “ship to store” options that many stores offer. Amazon offers a “locker” feature that allows a package to be picked up from a secure location.
  • Request a signature confirmation upon delivery.
  • Ask carriers to place packages in an area out of plain view.
  • Install a video doorbell or use motion-activated lights. Keep your home well lit.
  • Make it look like you are home.

“We’ll be out their patrolling, especially in our residential districts, and we’ll be utilizing marked and unmarked police vehicles,” Razza said. “We’re looking at adding to our naughty list, so be a good neighbor and report all suspicious activity.”

If you spot suspicious activity, you can email crime-fighting tips to If you are the victim of a crime, or witness a crime, you can call Johnston Police at 401-231-8100.


No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here