Missouri Senate Proposed Bill Could Mean More Consequences For Porch Hackers

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KY3) — The Porch Pirates have more packages than ever to choose from, but the offense could soon face tougher penalties in Missouri.

As online shopping becomes an American mainstay, the number of package thefts nationwide continues to rise. Nearly two-thirds of Americans have been victims of this crime.

In some states, such as Missouri, the penalty varies depending on what was stolen.

“It really depends on the value of the property to determine if it’s a misdemeanor or a felony,” said Col. Jimmy Brashear of the Camden County Sheriff’s Office.

Missouri Senate Bill 919filed by Republican Sen. Eric Burlison (R-District 133), would target those sticky fingers by eliminating the value-based penalty.

Under the legislation, the first offense would be considered a Class A misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a $2,000 fine. The second offense, a Class E felony, carries a maximum penalty of four years in prison and up to $10,000.

“I think it would deter people from committing these offenses because of the severity of the sentence,” Brashear said.

It’s not just the package on your porch, any kind of mail theft would result in heavy penalties. Prevention remains a valuable tool.

“I think the greatest [recommendation] is to have it delivered to someone else’s house, like your neighbor, or even have it delivered to where you work,” Brashear said.

The bill has not yet been heard in the Senate.

To report a correction or typo, please email [email protected]

Copyright 2022 KY3. All rights reserved.

Norman D. Briggs