LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- ‘Tis the season for special deliveries, pricey decorations and, unfortunately, thieves. Surveillance cameras at your home can certainly help, but police say there's more you can do.
"It shows her walking up here and taking off with it," Shana Heath said, describing the home surveillance video that caught a thief stealing from her front porch.
It happened just hours after she installed the $300 home security system.
Heath said, "The first night I had them on, I came outside and noticed my scroll was gone and I was like wow are you kidding me and I went and checked the footage and there it was."
There it was, on the desktop she has the cameras routed to, a clear-as-day video of her decorations departing her porch and the woman with her arms wrapped around them.
Heath posted screen shots on social media, hoping to find out who that woman was.
"Got all kinds of tips and within a day we had a name," Heath said.
It made for a happy ending for Heath, and for everyone on her street who said they don't think that thief or any others will be heading that way again.
Heath claims the money was well worth it and police agree it can be. But they argue you have to do it right, if you're going to do it at all.
"They can be a valuable tool for police after the fact if someone's home is broken into or if someone were to steal something off of the front porch," Detective Dennis McDonald with the St. Matthews Police Department said.
McDonald recommends installing the cameras at eye level with people coming and going from your porch. He also said higher quality video is a must, as the video is only as useful as the quality allows.
But if you are going for the dummy camera effect, he recommends you place it in a spot that is obvious and visible to all visitors.
Other tips from the St. Matthews Police Department to keep yourself and your belongings safe this holiday season:
-Don’t leave boxes of high-priced items at the edge of your driveway after unpacking them--police say that shows potential thieves what’s inside your home
-When shopping, take only what you need, leave behind extra credit cards or even a wallet or purse if possible
-Don’t leave packages in your vehicle in plain site
-Lock your vehicles' doors, don’t leave the key inside