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Story by Oregon State Media, Inc.
Published on Friday December 16, 2011 - 1:20 PM
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PORTLAND, Oregon - Portland Police officers yesterday responded to the area of North Van Houten Avenue and Willis Boulevard on the report of two people stealing boxes off of front porches in the neighborhood.

A witness reported seeing a man and a woman walking from her neighbor's yard and thought the pairs activity was suspicious so she called 9-1-1.

Officers arrived in the area and with the assistance of the 9-1-1 caller, located the pair at North Van Houten and Willis. 26-year-old Melissa Schwab had a pair of shoes hidden inside her coat. Officers walked with the 9-1-1 caller to Northgate Park, where the caller reported seeing the pair go, and officers located a box in a park garbage can. The box was addressed to a residence in the 5900 block of North Hudson Street. Officers went to that address and contacted the resident who told officers that he was expecting a package of Christmas treats from his sister in Seattle. Officers presented the missing box of treats to the man that had been recovered from Northgate Park. Officers were also able to determine that the shoes being held by Melissa Schwab were stolen and they too were returned to their owner.

Schwab was arrested for Theft in the Second Degree and Theft in the Third Degree and also had an outstanding warrant for Theft in the Third Degree. Schwab was booked into the Multnomah County Jail. Schwab's male companion was not charged.

The Portland Police Bureau would like to remind residents to be aware that thieves may target neighborhoods this time of year as many packages are delivered each day and that residents should be mindful of when packages are delivered and consider picking them up at the post office, UPS or FedEx.

Additionally, the Portland Police Bureau would like to recognize the witness for calling 9-1-1 when she suspected these two individuals were up to no good. This arrest may not have been possible without the witness calling 9-1-1.