Central Florida police deter gift thieves with ‘burglar boxes’

Keep ‘Grinches’ at bay this holiday, police say

Bunnell Police Department's burglar box (Copyright 2020 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.)

Some police departments in Central Florida are rolling out “burglar boxes” — which are often just redecorated recycling dumpsters — as a way to discard of gift wrap and product packaging without letting potential thieves see it first.

Mount Dora Police Chief Bret Meade explained why his department brought the service back for another year.

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“After you go shopping, unfortunately, some bad apples are doing their own shopping at our residents’ expense,” Meade said. “When they drive through a neighborhood on garbage day, all they need to do is look for the expensive electronic boxes put out to find a tempting opportunity to do bad.”

According to a news release from the Bunnell Police Department, leaving product packing outdoors “could be telling any ‘Grinches’ the very item they are shopping for is inside your home.”

Here’s a list of the “burglar boxes” we’ve been made aware of so far:

Orange County:


  • Winn-Dixie, 13200 E. Colonial Dr., Suite 100, Orlando FL 32826
  • Lowes, 2800 W. Sand Lake Rd., Orlando FL 32819
  • Winn-Dixie, 11957 S. Apopka Vineland Rd., Orlando FL 32836
  • St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, 4851 S. Apopka Vineland Rd., Orlando, FL 32819

Apopka- Sector 1 Sub-Station, 1111 N. Rock Springs Road, Apopka FL 32712

Ocoee- OCSO Sector 3 Sub-Station, 475 West Story Rd., Ocoee FL 34761

Flagler County:

Bunnell- Located on South Pine Street among parking spaces behind the Coquina City Hall at 200 S Church St.

Open from Dec. 7, 2021, to Jan. 4, 2022.

Lake County:

Mount Dora- Located downtown on 7th Avenue and Donnelly Street next to the old post office.

Open from Dec. 23-30, 2021.

News 6 will update this story with the locations of more “burglar boxes.”

About the Author:

Brandon, a UCF grad, joined the ClickOrlando team in November 2021. Before joining News 6, Brandon worked at WDBO.