Thieves steal packages off porches

HOUSTON - Shopping online is easier for most people than going to a store, but it also creates an easy way for thieves to steal.

Lara Gaines is a new mom. She has a 7-month-old and thought doing her Christmas shopping on the Internet was the most convenient way to go.

Her convenience turned into a major hassle when a Grinch showed up at her door.

"I was shocked," she said. "I can't believe someone would follow the UPS guy and go up and down the street like it's their own personal shopping store and take everything."

Gaines had five things stolen from her porch on 13th Street in the Heights last week. She's not the only one.

"There was an empty box on my front porch, cut open with nothing in it," she said. "It had my neighbor's address on it."

She then tracked packages she was waiting for and discovered they had been delivered an hour earlier.

Unfortunately, this type of theft is not unusual during the holidays. A year ago, a home security system caught images of two men stealing a box from a front porch. They were later arrested.

The U.S. Postal Service reported about 2,000 package thefts last year.

Gaines got all of her packages replaced and she's not taking any chances in the future.

"It's really sad," Gaines said. "It defeats the purpose, especially being a mom who needs to make things easy. It's frustrating."

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