Two female suspects are dressing up as healthcare workers during the state’s lockdown amid coronavirus in order to steal delivery packages off porches in Kennewick, Washington, according to police.
Photos of the two women were posted on the Kennewick Police Department’s Facebook page to help identify the suspects. Authorities stated, “Officers are currently investigating a case of porch piracy and need your help. Both suspects have been reported as stealing packages delivered to Kennewick residences. If you recognize either female or the vehicle pictured please contact non-emergency dispatch at 509 628-0333 and provide KPD Case 20-16877- to clarify, both appear to dress as nurses and we do not believe they are actual nurses.”
Video of one of the women stealing a package off a doorstep was captured by one of the victims and shared on Facebook. Michelle Santiago wrote on May 1, “Anybody in the Tri-Cities recognize this person?! We were victims of porch piracy on Wednesday. The ironic thing is she stole a new customized warrior rack for police equipment.”
“After reviewing video from our neighbors’ house it was apparent she was following Fed-ex through our neighborhood,” Santiago continued. “So, [she] may be looking to hit up other houses in the area. KPD has opened up a case.”
This case of two women dressing up as nurses to commit crimes has garnered national attention, as the suspects are accused of taking advantage of the current high respect toward front line workers amid coronavirus. The Kennewick Police Department noted, “The nurses we are fortunate to know only give their time, lives, and take the vitals of their patients (not their property).”
One woman replied to that comment, “Thank you KPD for going the ‘extra’ mile to clarify & give some love to real nurses & healthcare workers. We appreciate you all!”
Another person commented on Facebook, “This a discredit to the profession of nursing. How dare them use this just to steal and pilfer. It’s disgusting and makes me sick to see this. I hope they get caught and get what’s coming to them.” While another user online wrote, “Hope you catch the s.o.b. They are the low of the lowest.”
In the photos, one woman has surgical gloves on, while both appear to be wearing fake nurse badges. Security footage shared by police showed the porch pirates were driving a maroon sedan around Kennewick, which is located in southeastern Washington. The suspects also appear to be wearing wigs while stealing packages around the neighborhood.
Washington State Is Currently Under Lockdown Until May 31 Amid Coronavirus
On Friday, Washington’s Gov. Jay Inslee extended the stay-at-home order through the end of May. As of May 2, Washington had a total of 15,003 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 830 deaths, according to the Washington State Department of Health.
In order to practice social distancing, package delivery for essential items and groceries has become a vital part of life, which makes the porch piracy in Kennewick all the more frustrating for locals.