Child porch pirate caught on camera in Queens

Monday, May 13, 2019
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Police are looking for the guardian caught on camera sending a young boy to nab a package

OZONE PARK, Queens (WABC) -- New York City police are looking for the guardian caught on camera and accused of sending a young boy to nab a package off a doorstep in Ozone Park, Queens.

Home surveillance video shows the mini porch pirate walking with an individual disguised by a pink umbrella and a toddler.

The young boy then runs up and steals a package off of a front porch before returning to the guardian.

The intended recipient of that package says several hundred dollars' worth of clothes were inside.

The theft happened on his birthday, and that package was supposed to be a gift.

"I was furious that day," victim Rahmel Guess said. "Another package was supposed to arrive, but it got delayed. So that was a blessing in disguise, I guess."

Guess said he's less upset about the stolen birthday gift, which can be replaced, and is more upset about what he saw on his home surveillance system.

"It's the principle," Guess said. "The kid, I don't blame him for it. I blame the parent, not even teaching the kid right from wrong."

Guess filed a police report, and the NYPD is investigating. Detectives said the crime falls under petit larceny.

Neither FedEx nor UPS could say how many reports of stolen packages the companies have received in the past year.

A spokesperson for USPS said postal inspectors investigated more than 1,300 reports of stolen mail during the fiscal year 2018.

A recent survey by Wakefield Research suggested instances of package theft are quite high, with one in four Americans becoming victims.

Police say the increased use of home surveillance cameras has heightened awareness about package theft.

The NYPD suggests avoiding deliveries at addresses that don't have a secure package area or someone home to accept the delivery.

Police also suggest buying insurance to protect expensive packages.

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