This holiday season, many Parker County residents will order presents online, check their doorstep, and happily pick up their packages from the front door — but they may be disappointed when they find those packages missing.

“With Christmas rapidly approaching, many people will be taking advantage of the convenience of online shopping,” said District Attorney Jeff Swain. “Unfortunately, thieves will also try to take advantage, stealing packages from people’s homes and businesses.

“Criminals need to know that mail theft is a serious offense that can land you in jail or prison. It doesn’t matter if it’s stealing a letter delivered by the postal service to your mailbox or a package delivered by UPS or Amazon to your doorstep, it’s a crime you can be arrested for either way."

Parker County Sheriff Russ Authier said his office investigates mail theft offenses year round, but the holidays are more cause for concern with an increase in delivery volume and package value.

“I would strongly encourage anyone who has had a package stolen to report it to the sheriff’s office or to your municipal police department," Authier said. "Even if your stolen package is not very valuable, please report it.  You never know, your case may help us solve other thefts."

County Attorney John Forrest, who's office also handles mail theft cases, said it can drive up the cost of goods for consumers and retailers.

"Discouraging and deterring this conduct can make shopping more economical and profitable for everyone," he said. "The more of these criminals we can catch and prosecute, the more of this kind of behavior we can deter.”

To report mail or package theft or if you have surveillance footage you believe shows someone stealing packages, call the Parker County Sheriff’s Office at 817-594-8845 or call your municipal police department.

Tips about mail theft can be made anonymously by calling the Parker County Crime Stoppers hotline at 817-599-5555 or 1-800-942-STOP.

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