Brazen package thief hits Durham couple's home

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A couple says the man who stole packages could be the same one in a previous incident (WTVD)

A Durham man and his wife say they were on their way home from vacation when their security system alerted them via an app on their phone that a package had been delivered to their doorstep on Spring Meadow Drive. Less than three hours later, they arrived home to find their front step bare.

"As we pull up to the house we realize there are no packages [and think] 'why are there no packages?' So, I look at my phone again and realize my alarm went off again. And we caught him coming up to the door, taking them, and walking away," explains the husband, who wished to remain anonymous.

And sure enough, on the couple's security video, that man can be seen plain as day, making no attempt to hide his face, walking up to their front door, talking on a cell phone, reaching down, swiping the package, and leaving.

The couple immediately contacted police and filed a police report. It wasn't until they saw a similar story on ABC11 of another family who caught a crook on camera in the nearby neighborhood of Stratford Lakes Drive that they realized it was likely the same guy.

Read More: Brazen thief steals package in broad daylight

"For both me and her, we looked at each other and said, 'That's the same guy!' We started picking out stuff saying, 'That looks just like him.'"

The similarities include long dreadlocks and a gold watch worn on his left wrist. In both instances, the thief was on his cell phone when he committed the crime. And, much like the circumstances surrounding the theft at their house on Spring Meadow Drive, the other instance that occurred just minutes away in the Stratford Lakes Drive neighborhood happened in the middle of the day.

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The holidays are over, but ABC11 viewers are still complaining about stolen packages.

However, this wasn't the family's first brush with suspicious activity in their otherwise nice, quiet neighborhood. They actually installed the camera and surveillance system after a scare early last year.

"[My wife] was coming home from running some errands, and some people were at the door that were unfamiliar to us, and it threw up some red flags," recalls the husband.

His wife elaborated by detailing how one man claimed to be there looking for someone else before they abruptly left. But, shortly after that happened three men kicked in the door while their neighbor across the street was home alone.

"So that's what made us purchase the alarm system, to hopefully prevent such an incident from happening again," the couple shares.

While this incident wasn't quite as severe, they still describe it as leaving them feeling vulnerable. They're trying to be proactive by sharing their story and their video with us in the hopes that someone at home will see this video and recognize the suspect.

"At the end of the day we hope that this individual gets caught," says the shaken homeowner.

A spokesperson for Durham Police says that at this time they can't confirm that the two cases are related, although they are looking into that possibility. In all, there were eight reports of stolen packages in the Stratford Lakes Drive neighborhood since mid-November. Authorities suggest you set up delivery alerts, pick up packages directly from delivery companies, or arrange for a neighbor to pick up your packages to prevent these types of theft.

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