COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - The holiday season brings more shoppers, more traffic and more chances for thieves to make an appearance.
In Columbus, police say they are ramping up their holiday patrols across the city. as reports of so-called porch pirates, or people stealing unattended deliveries increase.
A crime police say always picks up during the holiday season.
"It's something that has been a recurring problem throughout my entire career," says Captain Ronnie Hastings with Columbus police. "It happens with an escalated level at Christmas time of course because there is a lot more presence and products being purchased by people."
Hastings says there are even reports of thieves following around delivery services. They are also snatching packages from porches, stealing from unlocked cars, and anything else they can get their hands on.
He says to never let your guard down.
"Keep your porch lights on, or your spotlights on outside your home if you can," Hastings said. "Keep your garage door closed."
Officers reportedly battle these kinds of holiday thieves yearly, Columbus police say they are out in full force to limit these kinds of offenses.
"We send as much manpower out there as we can at this time of year. We use all the resources that are available to try to prevent that from happening to begin with."