This Man’s Epic Ploy to Catch Package Thieves Red-Handed Is the Ultimate Act of Vigilante Justice

Mark Rober was one of the 11 million Americans who fell victim to package theft, but unlike most victims, he had a plan for when the robbers tried to strike again.

Rober was first alerted to the package thieves by his home security system. He knew a package had been listed as delivered, but it never arrived. He checked his home security footage and found that a couple had stolen it right off his front step.

“If you’ve ever been in a situation like this, you just sort of feel violated,” said Rober.

When he brought the security footage to the police, he was told it was not “worth their time” to investigate a package theft, leaving Rober feeling “powerless.”

Being an engineer who worked on the Mars rover, Rober decided there had to be a better way to get revenge on the thieves.

So he got to work building an epic device that would, if nothing else, ruin the day of the package thief while on camera.

Rober built a decoy package.

Inside the package, he placed four cameras and a tracking device so that he could catch the thieves in the act.

But as Rober already knew, the camera footage wasn’t going to do anything for him. So he decided to have some fun with it. He created a sensor that would trigger a cloud of fine glitter to douce the thief.

And just to make sure that the glitter wasn’t the only thing they would have to deal with, he also had the sensor trigger the release of a “fart spray” stink bomb.

All Rober had to do next was wait for the package to be stolen — and hilarity ensued.

Several thieves were covered head to toe in glitter only to be sprayed with a stink bomb.


Rober had so much fun with his vigilante justice that he even lent the device to his neighbor so that she could hit her package thieves, as well.

Hopefully, these thieves will take this experience as a reminder that bad things happen to bad people.


  1. Love the justice factor here. I do wonder, though, how much money he spent on this.

    1. If you consider that a NASA engineer spent 6 months building it, the engineering hours were likely very expensive if you could quantify that. The actual hardware probably wasn’t too costly, 4 old phones and a lot of 3D printed plastic. I doubt he spent more than a couple hundred on the whole project, well worth the enjoyment.

      1. “4 old phones”

        LTE isn’t that old. There are cheap new LTE phones.

    1. I would imagine that, given enough demand and a decent price scale, a simple cheap GPS device could be built into most packaging. This would give at least a temporary way of tracking where the packaging went. There are already small tracking devices, such as TrackR, TileMate, and all of the pet trackers. I am sure an appropriate package tracking device could be made cheap enough to imbed in the millions needed.

  2. This is a very clever way to play a prank on those who stole his packages, especially around the holiday season.

  3. With so many people receiving packages from their on-line purchases, architects need to build storage boxes into walls just like the old milk boxes. Drivers can be given access codes on their delivery lists.

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