Lakewood Porch Pirate Caught — Who Is She?

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LakewoodDetails are still coming in, but it appears our blond porch bandit that has been hitting Lakewood, M Streets, the Park Cities, and Midway Hollow has indeed been arrested (Note: This post has been updated to reflect requests by detectives working the case).

And after days of speculation and one false accusation (by the way, some people owe that lady an apology), we have a name of the alleged thief — Kelli Russell.

Kelli Russell (Photo courtesy Dallas County Jail)

Dallas police say Russell was caught at 12:40 p.m. yesterday in the 4900 block of Lancaster Road for multiple traffic violations. The stop was made police received a tip that Russell, 33, matched the description of the person caught in several videos stealing packages.

The suspect was arrested for those traffic violations and taken in for questioning,” Dallas Police Department public information officer Debra Webb said. “Detectives then executed a search warrant at her residence and found a large amount of stolen packages.”

Since most of the thefts haven’t yet been reported, detectives are tasked with tracking down all of Russell’s alleged victims and determining the value of the items in the packages.

“Detectives will then file an aggregate theft offense against the suspect,” Webb said.

Later this afternoon, an alleged victim of Russell’s said that a detective had already returned her items, and was told that law enforcement is asking for assistance from those who believe they were also hit by package theft in identifying all of the packages and items.

The same victim says she was told that the hope is that Russell will be charged with a felony offense based on the aggregate value of the packages allegedly stolen. Those who feel they may have been a victim can fill out a lost property report here. If you feel mail or packages that would’ve been delivered by the U.S. Postal Service was stolen, you will need to follow these instructions, as this is a federal offense.

Currently, Russell’s Dallas County Jail book-in information only lists the traffic offenses related to driving a car without a license plate. The vehicle allegedly driven by the package thief pictured in several social media posts was a Buick Rendezvous with no license plates.

Lakewood residents were both angered and amazed at the thief’s nerve — even after our initial report and several reports by local news media, the Lakewood porch pirate continued to hit Tuesday evening.

It appears that Russell has a current GoFundMe campaign up entitled “Help Kelli Get a Car.”

In her introduction to the campaign — which was started on Dec. 11, 2017, Russell says she’s been without a car for two years.

“I bust my ass daily, seven days a week, working 3 jobs and I still can’t save for a car because of all my medical bills that only seem to stay the same no matter how much I put towards them due to my horrible insurance in the past that didn’t cover any MRIs, overnight hospital stays and, more recently, the BRCA gene test,” Russell wrote.

“I ride the train every day and in just a couple of months I’ve witnessed a suicide, an attempted murder by gang members, drunks, half naked women at 6am, and even been followed so I have to arm myself with multiple weapons just to get to and from work,” she continued.

The rest of the post explains that she is a generous and independent person, but is suffering from anxiety and depression.

An alert reader also found an Instagram account.

We have reached out to a few of Russell’s Facebook friends to see if they can shed any light into what may have happened in Russell’s life, and have reached out to Russell as well.

We’ll also keep you updated on any additional charges.

No word on if any of the packages allegedly found in her apartment, by the way, contain dog poop.

Bethany Erickson is the education, consumer affairs, and public policy columnist for Contact her at

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Bethany Erickson

Bethany Erickson lives in a 1961 Fox and Jacobs home with her husband, a second-grader, and Conrad Bain the dog. If she won the lottery, she'd by an E. Faye Jones home. She's taken home a few awards for her writing, including a Gold award for Best Series at the 2018 National Association of Real Estate Editors journalism awards, a 2018 Hugh Aynesworth Award for Editorial Opinion from the Dallas Press Club, and a 2019 award from NAREE for a piece linking Medicaid expansion with housing insecurity. She is a member of the Online News Association, the Education Writers Association, the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences, and the Society of Professional Journalists. She doesn't like lima beans or the word moist.

Reader Interactions


  1. mmJoanna England says

    Kind of surprised at how virulent the posts are on her gofundme page. Like, I get that you’re pissed off about her stealing from you, but damn.

    • Rebeca Boss says

      I’m so proud of my neighbors and all the efforts they did to caught this thief. Yes, they are angry and in their right to bitter comment or even insult this bitch, she’s so lucky that no one beat her ass. No, I don’t feel sorry for her, she got what she deserved. Hopefully she will not get out with just a slap on her hand. Lakewood is sending a clear message to all thieves in our neighborhood.

    • JPearce says

      She deserved every comment! This isn’t a small shoplifting incident – she stole presents, medicine, a passport, etc. I’m shocked you would feel any pity for her.

    • P Crooks says

      Joanna, she stole from hundreds of people every single day. She stole a passport from a mailbox, which is a federal offense. She was driving a car while she stole & set up a “gofundme” page to buy a car. She posts pictures on Instagram of trips around the world on other people’s money. She’s a con. Maybe you would feel differently is she stole from you. Damn.

  2. Tony D Wilks says

    Kelli is a great young lady that obviously has had some issues the last few months. I guess we should have been there more for her. She will have to work through these issues.

    • Stacy Hagar says

      We should have been there more for her? Who? And why? So this is The fault or responsibility of others around her? What about her personal responsibility? This is exactly why people feel entitled to do whatever they want to do – because it is always someone else’s fault.

    • Kris says

      If you feel a responsibility for this woman, should we assume you raised and abandoned her? She’s an adult. She’s a predator. She thrived at the expense of others. She’s a liar and a thief – and she needs to repay those she wronged.

    • Susan says

      The citizens of our neighborhood…of Lakewood…deserve so much of the credit! Great job on taking action, banding together, reporting every sighting, sharing photos and videos, driving around looking for her and getting both local news reporters and the police on the case! Oh…and setting her up when she returned to the scene of one of her crimes! NextDoor was an amazing place to stay on her tail and trail her thefts…THIS is when Social Media actually works!! Kudos to all who played a part in bringing her down!

  3. Redraidermom says

    If you read the comments on her Instagram posts, she’s been stealing since last spring. The comments are very telling. Look at the church photo.

      • Susan says

        It wasn’t what was read…it was what was seen…on live camera and in pics…the stuff everyone is reading came thereafter! She was caught red handed taking from others who have worked hard to pay for their things. I live in the same place where the victims live and SAW her actions on the daily. What’s on camera and video isn’t a lie and I for one believe what I’m seeing…

      • Rod says

        Who’s believing what they read? We are believing what we see, the dozens of videos of her helping herself to other people’s belongings. She is a thief and a con and a dirt bag. Maybe if you lived in our neighborhood and were affected you would feel differently.

  4. JPearce says

    Don’t believe everything you read.? Are you kidding? Everything printed is true from those of us that stole from repeatedly. We caught her red handed and hopefully she will be charged as a felon. Have you read her pathetic GoFundMe page? Now that I can I say, don’t believe everything you read. Her story is one fat lie. Lue, cheat, steal – great example of a friend!

  5. Kay Dee says

    I believe in loyalty, but to deny facts & proof, while insisting your “friend” is such a good person- ridiculous! I hope she gets what she deserves & it is NOT sympathy!

  6. Deej says

    Do any of her friends that read this know if she was also an “Uber Eats” driver. She looks like the girl that rang my doorbell at 4AM the week of Thanksgiving claiming to be w/ Uber Eats. I have dogs, she was commenting to the person in her SUV that she hears barking dogs inside.

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