Standard-Examiner

New Farr West business builds lockers to deter porch package thefts

Wednesday , January 10, 2018 - 5:15 AM

Aaron Munn prepares to tack weld a door panel on a porch safe Monday, Jan. 8, 2018, at his home business in Farr West. The Porch Locker started in October with Munn and Angie Manning running it out of their home.

SARAH WELLIVER/Standard-Examiner

Aaron Munn prepares to tack weld a door panel on a porch safe Monday, Jan. 8, 2018, at his home business in Farr West. The Porch Locker started in October with Munn and Angie Manning running it out of their home.

JANAE FRANCIS, Standard-Examiner Staff

FARR WEST — This holiday season, many people spent time worrying about packages being stolen off porches. One group of neighbors in Farr West decided to do something about it. 

Two couples started a company, The Porch Locker, specializing in custom porch safes to secure a few packages at a time.

“When you do what you can to protect yourself, then you feel better,” said Aaron Munn, one of the partners who started the business in October.

Munn, Angie Manning and neighbors Ben and Heidi Sines, started the business when Munn and Manning became concerned about their own packages.

“It affects our livelihood,” Manning said. “If we don’t get supplies, it cripples our business.”

Munn and Manning are a couple who already contribute to running a few businesses together, including a clothing design business and their daughters’ food truck, Protein Evolution. The daughters sell protein smoothies, mostly in a parking lot at 12th Street and Washington Boulevard.

So far, the main focus of their porch safe business has been improving their designs. They are gearing up for mass production of about 30 safes a day in a garage behind their house.

Story continues below photo.

After seeing a report in the Standard-Examiner about Cody Taylor, a father who considered refinancing his SUV to replace $5,000 worth of anti-rejection medications stolen from his front porch last month, the entrepreneurs donated the best safe they’ve developed so far to the family.

“Can you imagine if he had lost his son because of a thief?” Munn said. “We saw that story and we felt like we had to get our safe to him.”

RELATED: $5K worth of life-saving medications stolen from 4-year-old

“When it’s somebody’s child, it’s not cool,” Manning said. “You want it to be perfect when it’s somebody’s child.”

Other community members stepped forward with Christmas gifts and other items for both of Taylor’s children after reading the report.

The business owners installed the safe on Taylor’s porch, securing it into the cement below to discourage future thieves from stealing the safe as well as its contents.

The safe is made with a keypad lock to allow Taylor to give instructions with the combination to mail carriers when ordering expensive medications and other items.

Taylor thanked the couple by posting pictures of his new safe on Facebook.

Story continues below.

Munn believes a safe is the best defense against thieves.

“What proves that these guys don’t care is when they found out it was medication, they didn’t bring it back,” Munn said.

Manning called the rise in thefts an epidemic, pointing to widespread news about packages stolen from doorsteps and national news outlets warning online shoppers of ways to protect themselves, including through doorstep safes.

Story continues below photo. 

The entrepreneurs are negotiating with home developers who may build their product right into porches and garages.

They also hope to sell them to real estate agents and finance officers who could give the safes as thank-yous to clients purchasing new homes.

Those interested in ordering a custom safe may visit the company’s website at ThePorchLocker.com or call the company at 385-258-3345.

A standard porch safe, which can be matched to the design of a house, runs about $350 and is 4 feet tall, 2 feet wide and 2 feet deep. That size is big enough to hold most packages, the business owners said, but other sizes and custom designs are also available.

You may reach reporter JaNae Francis at jfrancis@standard.net or 801-625-4228. Follow her on Twitter at @JaNaeFrancisSE or like her on Facebook at Facebook.com/SEJaNaeFrancis.