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Empty boxes on your curbside could be an invitation for thieves

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Posted at 7:35 PM, Dec 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-26 19:35:09-05

LANSING, Mich. — Before Christmas, you have to worry about the possibility that porch pirates can steal your gifts, and after Christmas, you still have to worry about the possibility of them seeing the gifts you have gotten. And, leaving those empty boxes out on your curb could be an invitation for thieves.

Recycling leftover boxes and packages from Christmas presents is part of Alison Jacob's routine. She has also been making sure to keep trash minimal outside of her house and for a good reason.

"Getting the stuff off of the curb and not leaving it there so people can see what they can possible get into your house to take when you have new items around is definitely an important thing," Jacob's said.

Police say putting those empty boxes out for the garbage truck can make your home a target for burglary. Instead, take those boxes to a recycling center, or if you want to put them in your trash, grab a pair of box cutters. You can break down the boxes by cutting the tape and then fold them inside out so the logos of the companies don't show. Lastly, tape them into a bundle.

Conceal the trash in a large plastic bag as keeping a low profile is key.

"Don't advertise," Mike Rice, who recycles holiday trash said. "I was in law enforcement for 43 years so I'm really sensitive to the issue."

Police also encourage people to write down the serial number to new items they get this year.

"Be safe on the holidays and make sure that you're not putting yourself in danger I guess with new toys you get," Rice said.

You can also wait until it gets closer to garbage pick-up day so that way your things aren't out on display for a long period of time.

If you're planning on recycling some items after your holiday clean up, it's important to keep in mind what can and can't be recycled.

Items like normal, glossy or waxy wrapping paper can't be recycled, and several centers won't accept Christmas lights, wreaths with metal on them, or Christmas trees.

If you're planning on recycling boxes, make sure to remove the bubble wrap and tissue paper from inside of them.

All recycling centers are different, however, so make sure you double check to see what your specific center allows.

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