Package thieves are running rampant this holiday season and one Killeen man has fallen victim. The crime happened Friday on Dahlia Court in Killeen and was caught on camera.
It is a situation homeowner Ira Fortune is still trying to wrap his head around. Fortune was at the store when he got an alert from his home surveillance system telling him someone was approaching his home.
Fortune then watched the crime play out in real time on his phone, he says a group of boys were walking down the street when one of them took a detour to Fortunes front porch. The video then shows the boy swipe a package sitting on Fortune's porch, and then run across the street to meet back up with his friends.
"You see it on TV all the time with other people but now I'm like wow it's happening to me. I just kept saying who could this be in the neighborhood," Fortune said.
Fortune said the box contained an old fire extinguisher he was returning because it had been recalled. Pictures provided to Channel 6 show a torn box Fortune claims the thief ripped open and left under his neighbors car. Fortune says after viewing the item the thief still took off with the old fire extinguisher.
"He took the fire extinguisher, threw the boxes on the ground, put the fire extinguisher in his book bag and then left with the other boys. I couldn't believe it," Fortune said.
Killeen Police said they put out extra patrols around this time of year and say this isn't an unusual crime during the holiday season.
"We do know that during the holidays theft does increase because everybody is constantly ordering," KPD Spokesperson Ofelia Miramontez said.
Fortune said he plans to press charges against the thief and has a message for him as well.
"I really hope this will teach him a lesson and prevent him from doing anything similar in the future," Fortune said.
Channel 6 also spoke with a FedEx official about package thefts in general this holiday season. They say the best way to avoid becoming a victim is to pick up or drop off packages directly to your nearest mail service or request a signature.
Local police departments including Killeen, Hewitt and Waco PD also say if asked they will check up on residents houses while they are out of town or on vacation.