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Video: Hidden camera records apparent holiday package theft from front porch in Newport Beach

December 24, 2010 |  7:26 am


A hidden video camera recorded the apparent theft of a package from the front porch of a home in Newport Beach, where police say a woman was following delivery trucks and swiping items delivered before Christmas.

After several such thefts in one Newport Beach neighborhood, one family hid a video camera on their front porch. It captured what is said to be an instance of a woman walking up to the porch and walking away with a package.

Newport Beach detectives conducting surveillance Thursday said they spotted Melanie Kathleen Astin following a delivery truck in the 300 block of El Modena Avenue. Detectives said they found previously delivered packages in her possession and arrested Astin on grand theft charges.

Police had been monitoring the area around Fullerton Avenue and El Modena since receiving complaints.

The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call Det. Rick Henry at (949) 644-3786 or 800-550-NBPD.

--Robert J. Lopez and Joseph Serna

Video: A woman walks up to a front porch and leaves with a package. Credit: KTLA