JEFFERSON CITY — State Sen. Eric Burlison, R-Battlefield, presented Senate Bill 919 to the Senate Judiciary and Civil and Criminal Jurisprudence Committee on Monday, Feb. 28. This legislation creates the offense of mail theft, in an effort to deter “porch pirates.”
Current Missouri law states that the fines associated with mail theft are dependent on the value of the items in the package. This legislation would bring state law closer in line with the federal offense of mail theft, which does not consider the dollar value of the items. Additionally, a federal mail theft felony applies to mail delivered by the United States Postal Service, so stealing a package delivered by a private company, such as UPS or FedEx, falls under state law. Senate Bill 919 would help close that gap.
“At a time when many of us have increased our online shopping, we are now seeing the uptick of ‘porch pirates’ stealing packages from doorsteps,” Sen. Burlison said. “Because of the pandemic, many people needed to have their medication and other important items delivered to them. While they do not have significant monetary value to others, they can be lifesaving for these individuals. If the fine for stealing these items is minimal, it does nothing to deter this crime, so it is my hope this legislation will end porch piracy.”
According to a Safewise survey of 1,000 Americans from November 2021, around 210 million packages disappeared from doorsteps across the country in the last 12 months and 64% of Americans have been a victim of package theft in the last 12 months.
Please visit Sen. Burlison’s official Missouri Senate website for more information on his legislative agenda at senate.mo.gov/Burlison.