It is the season for many things, including having many packages delivered to your doorstep. While ordering items online is convenient, one thing that isn’t very convenient is having those packages stolen right off your porch – something often referred to as porch piracy.
Porch piracy is tempting to many, but there are many reasons to refrain from taking packages from people’s front steps. There is a large amount of legal trouble you can face for a crime that is effectively mail theft in the state.
Here is what you need to know about the crime of mail theft in Minnesota and the steps to take to help prevent your packages from being taken this holiday season.
Mail Theft in Minnesota
It may seem as if it’s not very serious to take a package off of a person’s porch, but the truth is that mail theft is a serious offense and a felony in Minnesota.
Mail theft perpetrates in many different ways in the state, such as:
- Removing mail from a mail depository intentionally and without the right to do so
- Taking mail from a mail carrier intentionally and without the right to do so
- Getting custody of mail through deception and false representation with the intent to deceive
- Removing the contents of mail that is addressed to another intentionally and without the right to do so
- Deliberately taking mail or mail contents left near a mail depository without consent
Central to each of these acts is intent. You will be convicted of this crime if the courts prove you held the intent to commit mail theft. If you are found guilty of mail theft in the state, you face a felony conviction that can put you behind bars for up to three years and make you responsible for fines.
How to Avoid Porch Piracy
Porch piracy is a growing problem. While the law is still trying to work out how to best address this problem. Further investigations into mail theft would require expanding mail theft statutes. There are things you can do to avoid being a victim. This holiday season, you should:
Have Your Package Tracked
You can have your package tracked by the delivery company easily, so you know when to expect the package. The easiest way to avoid having your packages stolen is to get your package as soon as it’s delivered. If you can’t be home, then try to have your neighbor or a friend keep an eye out for it if you can.
Get a Video Doorbell
Technology is changing many things for the better, including ways to monitor your porch. Doorbell cameras are very popular and are a great way to protect your home. Not only is this useful when someone comes to your door, but it’s also a great way to warn off potential porch pirates.
Get an Amazon Locker
You may not be able to retrieve your package or have it retrieved when delivered to avoid porch pirates, but there are other options. One option is an Amazon locker. These lockers are in public places, and you can have packages delivered to a locker near you instead of your home.
About the Author:
Christopher Keyser is an AV-Preeminent rated criminal and DWI defense attorney based in Minneapolis who is known for fighting aggressively for his clients and utilizing innovative tactics to get the most positive results. He has been featured in numerous media outlets due to the breadth and depth of his knowledge and has been named a Certified Specialist in Criminal Law by the Minnesota Bar Association. Mr. Keyser is Lead Counsel rated, and he has received recognition for his criminal law work from Avvo, Expertise, Super Lawyers, The National Trial Lawyers, and more.