Here's the police blotter report:
"The Colorado Springs Police Department’s Strategic Investigations Unit (SIU), in collaboration with the Colorado Springs Police Department’s Crime Analysis Unit (CAU), targeted a Porch Pirate Crime Pattern after several neighborhoods experienced an increase related to home deliveries this holiday season. Utilizing home security footage submitted via apps and websites such as Ring and Nextdoor, SIU and CAU were able to identify and arrest five individuals over the last 48 hours. In some instances, officers were able to recover some stolen property and return it to the victims. The success of this investigation is largely due to the amount of quality security video provided by victims and community members. This is an example of how important it is for the police and the community we serve to partner when crime is observed and/or recorded. Please be a good witness and do not make direct contact with suspects."
Speaking of bold and pathetic, another type of coward siphons gas from vehicles. Short story author R. T. Lawton recently had a writing session interrupted by attempted thievery. You can read about the gas thief, and see photos of the theft in process, on the SleuthSayers blog. That idiot didn't know who he was messing with!
New technology influences crime fiction. How do you strand a heroine when readers believe we have constant and reliable cell phone service? Immediate 911 capability? Cell phone cameras with amazing clarity, and the ability to text or email the photos or video to the police? Now private homes can have security cameras and alarms at affordable prices. How are criminals going to get away with their nefarious activities in this day and age?
Apparently with face masks and boldness.
The most pathetic and evil thieves prey on the elderly. Older women are terrible about leaving gaped open purses in shopping carts. I used to do my grocery shopping with my mother, but now stand guard over her while she shops. If anyone tries to steal Mom's wallet, I will take down that scum bag with the fury of a rapid wolverine. She was impressed one evening when a perfectly healthy and capable looking beggar approached us in the grocery store parking lot. I gave them a verbal smack-down. I am disgusted by panhandlers who try to intimidate women into giving them money. I'll give you something. And you won't like it.
Law abiding citizens must be on high alert, sadly. Be aware of your surroundings. Friend your local police department's Facebook page to receive alerts and info on the current threats. Don't be a victim! And if you're really smart, live near folks like R. T. Lawton and his wife. They're keeping an eye out for porch pirates, gas thieves, and other pathetic criminals.