With the number of online orders Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, and all the rest of the mega retailers process, it’s easy to see why package theft has exploded in recent years. One victim of the so-called “porch pirates” decided to take matters into his own hands and rig up a system that gives would-be criminals a little extra boom.
As Jalopnik reports, a Tacoma, Washington, man named Jaireme Barrow had grown tired of seeing his pricy package deliveries end up in someone else’s hands after being left on his front steps. With a history of spotting the thieves on his own video cameras, he knew how the deliveries were disappearing, but needed a way to stop them. So, he did what anyone would do; he grabbed his shotgun.
Well, not the gun itself, exactly, but a blank shotgun cartridge. Barrow rigged the blank to a wooden frame with a firing pin held back by a small plate. The plate is tied to his door via a fishing line, which is virtually invisible. The entire contraption is then placed in a cardboard box made to look like a just-delivered package. When the porch scavengers grab it, they plate is yanked out and the firing pin strikes the cartridge, producing a considerable boom.
Since the cartridge is a blank there are no projectiles, but the blast sound like a menacing shotgun all the same. It’s the same premise behind “exploding alarms,” and it works rather well, as you might imagine.
Barrow has since caught multiple thieves attempting to yank on the fake package — seriously, are porch pirates invading Washington? — and recorded their frightened escapes for the world to see: