YouTuber engineer unleashes new ‘glitter bombs’ on package thieves

U.S.

Vendors and delivery companies offer plenty of options to help customers deter package theft. (Getty Images)

(NewsNation Now) — Having a package stolen stinks — sometimes literally.

Porch pirates who steal from YouTube creator Mark Rober are met by an explosion of glitter and a foul-smelling spray upon opening what appears to be an Apple HomePod.

For years, videos of bait packages have garnered millions of views as thieves hoping to find something valuable instead encounter a burst of skin-dyeing UV powder or an explosion of packing peanuts.

The bait package featured in the latest of these videos, posted Friday by Rober, is the result of careful engineering four years in the making. Ultimately, Rober’s “glitter bombs” are intended to “take a stand against dishonest punks,” he said in a 2018 video detailing the creation of his first bait package.

Rober’s most recent video shows people in their cars and homes confused and panicked at the cloud of glitter that’s followed by the blaring of a Toyota Carolla car horn and flashing police lights.

This year’s model, the “Glitter Bomb 4.0” as Rober has dubbed it, also features a 10-second countdown, a self-launching lid, and “20% more fart spray” than previous models.

Four cellphones and an onboard microphone capture the porch pirates as they steal the package. They also record the thieves’ reactions and automatically upload the footage to a storage cloud. Rober additionally is able to track the package’s location so he can retrieve it once it’s been dumped.

Not everyone takes the bait, however.

Rober placed some of his packages near shared mailboxes and found that people more often left the parcels alone or took them in for their neighbors.

“Either people are getting more honest, or perhaps, I don’t know, it’s the devastating power of glitter that’s encouraging more civil behavior,” Rober said in the video.

Jokes aside, three out of four Americans have fallen victim to package theft in their lifetime, according to a recent SafeWise survey.

A separate NewsNation survey conducted by Decision Desk HQ found that 16.7% of people have had a package stolen, while another 30.5% knew someone who had.

According to Rober’s first glitter bomb video in 2018, he started the project after spotting a man and woman stealing a package from his doorstep.

“If you’ve ever been in a situation like this you just sort of feel violated,” Rober said. “And then I took this to the police and even with the video evidence they said it’s just not worth their time to look into, so then you also feel powerless.”

That’s when Rober began taking matters into his own hands, and next year he’ll be joining forces with the police in “some capacity,” he said in Friday’s video.

Because “sometimes revenge is a dish best served fabulously,” he said.

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