‘Porch pirate’ arrested in Metuchen
METUCHEN — Police have arrested another alleged "porch pirate" they say could be responsible for multiple thefts.
Michael Castillo was arrested at his Perth Amboy home for a series of thefts by a suspect dubbed the "Metuchen Porch Pirate," according to a post on the Metuchen Police Facebook page. Police said in additional comments that Castillo was released after his arrest.
Police told MyCentralJersey.com that an incident on Dec. 10 helped lead to Castillo's arrest, when he was caught by a resident as he tried to take a package off a Maple Avenue home's porch.
He told the resident he was actually checking to make sure drivers were properly delivering packages, according to the report, and then quickly left in his Mercedes sedan.
Castillo may be connected to other thefts around the state, according to police who did not disclose details.
"Porch pirates" take packages delivered to homes during the day while residents are at work.
Earlier in the week Trey Johnson, 31, of Woodbridge, a driver for a company called Prime EFS, which is contracted by Amazon to deliver packages, was charged with leaving 24 packages along Fawn Hill Drive, according to township Police.
Nearly $1,975 worth of packages were left along the Morris County road, according to police, who said half the packages had been opened and rifled through.
Another Amazon subcontractor was charged in Keansburg on Tuesday with stealing packages he had delivered moments before, and leaving them in a garbage can.
Amazon said it utilizes a variety of different carriers to get customers their packages, from traditional carriers to locally-based delivery service providers to independent contractors through the Amazon Flex program.
The company said their partners thoroughly vet their drivers, who receive multi-state, comprehensive background checks and motor vehicle records reviews. No driver employed by a delivery service partner can deliver Amazon packages until they pass the background check and motor vehicle records review, according to Amazon.