FedEx driver catches kids stealing package from porch in Akron

Posted at 5:15 PM, Aug 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-25 21:41:58-04

An alert FedEx driver may have helped Akron police solve a rash of thefts and break-ins.

After he witnessed kids steal a package from a porch, he followed them, used his cell phone to capture video of them and then posted the video to Facebook.

One juvenile suspect was in custody as of Friday evening. Charges against other juveniles are expected.

Now, the victims are grateful to the driver, including Jim Cool.

Cool likes to help neighborhood kids. On Tuesday, when three teens asked him to help fill up bicycle tires, Cool didn't think twice.

"There's multiple kids that come through here and I just try to help them out," he said. "I mean, some of them are less fortunate than others, just trying to do the nice thing."

What Jim didn't realize was a FedEx driver was videotaping the encounter from South Main Street, and Cool had unknowingly helping the suspected crooks. 

Moments earlier, the FedEx driver witnessed kids steal a package from a porch in the Firestone Park neighborhood. He followed them to Jim's home and for a short time later, capturing their faces on camera.

"The bicycle that I was filling the tires up, they actually stole that on the way here out of the neighbor's garage around the corner, so I was actually filling up tires on a stolen bicycle to help them get away with a stolen Fed Ex package," Cool said. 

The next morning, someone broke into Cool's garage and stole a dirt bike and a four-wheeler. 

Cool is almost certain it was the same kids he had helped.

The FedEx driver didn't stop on his quest to get justice for the victim of the package theft.

He posted pictures and the video to Facebook. So far, it has more than 300,000 views. 

Akron police said after that driver's video went viral, they received a bunch of tips. A short time later, cops began to zero in on several kids who could be responsible for as many as a dozen crimes.

Police believe one of the thieves was also caught on camera in June, arranging to buy a phone through an app, before punching and robbing the victim.

Cool said his days of helping kids are over.

"No more. I just have too much to lose," he said.

On the other hand, Cool said he's grateful to the FedEx driver.

"I'm glad that he did it," he said. "I've actually been in contact with him. If people were more vigilant and started posting this kind of stuff, maybe the crime rate would go down."