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Rise in Theft of mail from residential mailboxes. Random thefts or inside job?

by Thunda

Yesterday a media release came out from Hawaii Police Department, informing the public of a recent spike in mail theft, both incoming and outgoing, at residential mailboxes. They also urged the public to install locked mailboxes at their residence to deter theft of incoming mail with sensitive, personal information enclosed and to drop off outgoing mail at a secure United States Postal Service (USPS) drop box or post office.

Throughout the years, my neighborhood has been blessed as we have had some awesome mail delivery people, that we have come to know by name. But even the greatest of workers need some time off. But who replaces them as they take their much deserved breaks?

For years we have had no problems. Though it is stated by USPS that your mailbox is federally protected, who have we seen get charged or prosecuted for anything to do with mailboxes, besides the Kealoha case?

At the beginning of last year, my father passed away. And due to drama and legal issues from his widow, we could not have the funeral until around September. A family friend could not make it, so he dropped of his condolence envelopes at my house. With no place better and thinking it would be safe, he put the envelopes in my mailbox. At the time, I was taking a much needed nap and woke up from a text that he had dropped off the envelopes.

As I went outside to get them, I found the mailbox was only filled with mail? Confused, I checked my security cameras to see what happened. It was about 30 minutes that passed, from the time he sent the text, to my attempted retrieval. An unfamiliar mailperson came to deliver my mail, that day. I watched as he opened the mailbox, noticed the envelopes, look them over and without hesitation, took them with him?! Thinking it was nothing major, I contacted friends who directed me to the Postmaster, as he may have turned it in? Mind you, the envelopes was addressed to my name and the flag was not raised on my mail box to indicate outgoing mail. The Postmaster informed me that nothing had been turned in on my route. I was then told to call the toll free number and file a claim.

After months of back and forth with the inspector and having to send emails for the follow-up and inquire the status of the case; I was informed that they would be setting up a sting operation on the employee to see if he would do it again. Three months later, I got a call. They put something in the mailbox and he did not take it this time, so there was no way they could prove he took anything from the mailbox, ALTHOUGH my security video, clearly shown otherwise.

Take a minute to understand USPS inspector’s crime logic. Even with video evidence of the employee stealing…In order to be convicted you must do the same crime twice and be caught by them. With almost a year wasted, I present you with that video and the thought … maybe it ain’t some random person stealing your mail, but a bunch of bad employees who know how to work the system? Who knows, but in reality as long as these worker remain employees… USPS is no longer the safest way to ship.

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