Clarksville, Tenn. (WKRN) – There is now a new saying in a Clarksville neighborhood, that Christmas shopping came early for one man, and this time, it isn’t a good thing.
“I saw a man on my front porch,” said Ashley Hunt. “At first it was more like a shock that it was actually happening, at first I was like, this is not happening.”
We tend to talk about porch pirates around the holidays when thousands of packages are being delivered every day leading up to the big day, but one man is tracking down deliveries early.
“You have to be kidding me. I’m watching it happen while I was at work,” said Hunt.
Hunt took to social media, after she was working at a nearby brewery, and got an alert on her phone. At first, she thought her husband had just gotten home, but when she opened her home security camera, someone she didn’t know was standing in front of her door. That same man, then took off with all her packages sitting on the porch.
“He stole $200 worth of dog food, which is not the biggest thing, but my husband works for a medical company based out of Nashville, and they stole some of the lab equipment that he was going to fix the day next day with. So, he got away with about $4,000 worth of stuff.
In the surveillance video, you can see a man, with no shirt on, walk up to the front door, access the packages, and then take off with two boxes. Later, the same man and car are seen coming back to take another package.
Shortly after posting to social media, Hunt started receiving messages from neighbors who saw the same man and car in front of their home.
“He literally hit a house four minutes after leaving my driveway. I get a message from a girl, and she said ‘I believe he was just at my house too.’ She sent me a picture and it was the identical thing,” Hunt said.
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News 2 reached out to that neighbor who gave us photos of a man who looked similar to the man captured outside of Hunt’s home. She claims, the same man, took off with her mini bike and helmet.
“It shows that in broad daylight, there are some brazen people out there. They will do whatever it takes. We’ve had 29 cases of porch pirates this year to date, so far,” said Scott Beaubien, with the Clarksville Police Department.
Clarksville police are hunting down those criminals, even urging residents to stay on high alert because porch pirates can strike at any time.
“In this case, recently, it’s a very clear view of that person. Somebody does know him, and it’s just a matter of time before we finally do identify him and hold him accountable,” Beaubien said.
Due to the theft being valued at over $4,000, once caught, the man is facing federal charges.
Clarksville police reported Thursday morning 45-year-old Charles McManus was arrested for theft of property in connection with this case. Detectives were able to quickly identify McManus as the individual stealing the packages and arrested him Thursday morning, according to a release.
McManus is the suspect in several other thefts and is pending charges in those cases. His bond has been set at $20,000.
Clarksville police suggest signing up for notifications for when packages or delivered, or even having them shipped to your workplace in an effort to avoid thieves.