Porch pirates are the criminals who drive around otherwise good neighborhoods looking for packages left on porches and in front lawns. When these opportunistic criminals spot a package that was left unattended, they dash out of their car and up to the front porch. They snatch up the bounty and then run away and hope that they’ve stolen something worth some money.
Because people are buying more goods online than ever before, these criminals are becoming more common. And they have been named porch pirates.
One law-abiding homeowner from Tacoma, Washington was sick and tired of porch pirates coming up to his house and stealing the stuff he bought with his hard-earned money.
And that’s when Jaireme Barrow decided that he needed to take action and protect his deliveries from these thieves. Frustrated that stuff kept being stolen, Barrow created a rigged box that would terrifying porch pirates and teach them a lesson.
Barrow was particularly angry because the stuff he was losing was expensive Jeep parts. The thieves would come up to his porch in the middle of the day and snag the boxes right off his porch. He felt violated and needed to retaliate.
So what did Barrow do? He went to his drawing board and proceeded to develop a terrifying booby-trap that would cause any porch pirate to wet their pants. Barrow’s rigged package would cause shotgun shells to explode if touched.
And with that, Barrow’s The Blank Box was born.
He has since filmed porch pirates coming up to his door and trying to take the rigged box. When they grab it, the blank shotgun shells inside explode and send the terrified thieves running for their lives.
Barrow only wants to scare the thieves, not hurt them. He never uses real shotgun shells, only blanks.
However, the loud explosion is enough to keep the thieves away from his porch for good. And now he is selling The Blank Box online so other people can protect themselves from porch pirates.
Before he started to sell it online, he tested it many times. Because his house was in a busy part of town, his packages were stolen every day. He told Inside Edition that he planted the trap for 15 porch pirates. And they were all left terrified when the blank shotgun shells exploded.
Local police hate his invention. They worry that it could accidentally kill, especially if someone loads it with live shotgun shells.
“If the would-be package thief is hurt in any way, the homeowner would be responsible,” Tacoma Police spokeswoman Loretta Cool told the Seattle Times last year when Barrow was hyping up his prank device. And if Barrow does hurt someone, he could likely face criminal charges, because he is using shotgun ammunition, even though it is blank.
Barrow ignored the police warnings. He turned his device into a marketable item and is selling it online.
Now people are looking to get back at the porch pirates in their area. And they’re eager to get their hands on The Blank Box. People are upset with the new criminal trend.