Genius: Man Invents Booby-Trapped Package to Catch Porch Pirates

Chris Menahan
Dec. 19, 2017

Jaireme Barrow was fed up with low-life criminals stealing packages off his porch, so he set out to do something about it.

The 34-year-old inventor created a booby trapped package which fires off a black shotgun shell when his packages are lifted, and as the videos he uploaded to his YouTube show, it's working like a charm.

Necessity is the mother of invention.

From the Washington Post:
"I was thinking, how could I scare them and make them drop my package and then never come to my front porch again," Barrow told The Washington Post. "And I thought, 'Getting shot at is scary. That'll make them think twice.' "

With that, TheBlankBox was born.

...The nondescript dummy box is placed in plain sight. When an unsuspecting thief lifts it, a 12-gauge shotgun blank goes off.

...It's very loud but technically harmless, Barrow said.
...And what of litigious would-be criminals tempted to sue after taking a stumble down porch stairs?

Barrow suggests tacking up a "no trespassing" sign and taping a note to the box that warns people to not move packages on the porch. That can inoculate a homeowner from lawsuits. Notifying delivery drivers doesn't hurt, either.
The Tacoma Police, who refuse to arrest any of the criminals he's caught on video stealing his packages, are claiming the device is illegal.
“Even though it’s a blank, the way the device is made is actually illegal,” said Loretta Cool, a police spokeswoman. Barrow could also be held liable if someone gets hurt on his property during or after an explosion, she said.

“Even more than him crossing the line, I’m not sure if people realize that, even though this person is stealing something, he can’t intentionally set them up to be hurt,” Cool said.

She said police are not currently investigating Barrow because “nobody has reported this. We have to have a victim.”
Such claims are not stopping Barrow, you can buy a single blank box on his website for $59.99 or a "double shot" for $84.99.

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