Coachella Valley Region
The holiday season is upon us and thieves are on the lookout for your holiday packages.
The U.S. Postal Service is projecting a 12 percent increase in package volume this holiday season and while the risk for package theft is present throughout the year, authorities say an uptick during the holiday season is expected.
"It is that time of year, there are going to be the grinches out there that are cruising the neighborhoods looking for packages to take. So it’s a crime of opportunity," said Sergeant Dan Marshall of the Indio Police Department.
Authorities say holiday package thefts regularly increase between Thanksgiving and New Years.
"The uptick is usually after black Friday, after Thanksgiving. That’s our slowest actual shipping day, is the Friday after Thanksgiving. And the busiest shipping day will be that following Monday," said Bret Watkins, postmaster of the Palm Desert Post Office.
Like wallets and purses, authorities say to not leave mail and packages unattended. If a package is larger in size and recipients can authorize their carrier to leave the package in a specified location.
"It’s very important to be aware that there are people out there that are going to be looking for those packages. And unfortunately, it happens throughout the year but during the holidays is where we really see a spike," said Marshall.
When holiday shopping, one of the best things shoppers can do keep themselves and their items safe is to be vigilant.
"Be assertive. Shoulders back, head up, look around, make eye contact with people. Let them know that you’re looking," said Marshall.