Lucas emails this weekend:
I’ve read (and re-read) the article and comments from the November mailbox break ins. – https://www.mapleleaflife.com/2015/11/12/updated-reports-of-mail-theft-continue-in-maple-leaf/
I’m afraid to report that ours and several others locking mailboxes were pried open sometime between 11:30 p.m. and 8 a.m. this (Friday) morning. Ours was left hanging open with our junk mail left soaking wet. We live on Northeast 90th Street and 17th Avenue Northeast.
We’ve reported it to USPS and are filing a police report as well. It’s unfortunate that these events keep happening in our neighborhood. It makes me nostalgic for the time when we had mail slots in our house.
We’ll be placing our mail on hold and considering options for a mail service. The mailbox is, unfortunately, damaged to the point where it will no longer remain closed.
Earlier in the week Jesse (Victory Heights) mailed:
“Hi Maple Leaf Life, I caught a package thief on camera and am wondering if there is a way I can send pictures your way to warn others?”
On Nextdoor Northgate/Maple Leaf he added: “He’s wearing an old school emblem Mariner’s flat-billed cap and red and black buffalo checkered jacket and sunglasses. ”
I like the GPS bait package, if it doesn’t move, no problem, if it moves, a cop could be on it in just a few minutes.
Chief O’Toole, are you listening?
Are people with their mailboxes located next to their front door, away from the street experiencing any of this? Or is mail theft only happening on streets without sidewalks?
That is one reason we use a PO Box. Also part of the problem is even if you tell FEDEX to put the packages in a safe place, like inside a porch door, I consider myself lucky if the get them to the top of the porch. UPS usually does it for us. I try to have everything sent to POB, but some stuff won’t go there.
A few days ago, I heard about a police department that decided to be pro-active combatting mail theft. Like GPS equipped bait cars used to fight auto thief, the police used GPS equipped mail packages. When the thieves stole the package, the police simply used GPS to track them down. This freed the police to other duties until the package was stolen so there was no wasted police manpower sitting and waiting. The side bonus was that when they busted the mail thieves, the police ended up solving a lot of other crimes, e.g., burglaries, shoplifting, drug use and peddling, car prowling and thiefs. Sadly, the SPD isn’t able to “think outside” of the box. Instead, SPD is a reactionary police force which has become a joke among the citizens it is suppose to serve and protect.
There’s been sporadic mail theft in Maple Leaf the whole time we’ve lived here (about 15 years). And lately there have been a lot of suspicious signs.
We’ve found batches of mail stuffed in the plants along the road quite a few times and in quite a few places while walking our child to/from elementary school. We’ve found all the mailboxes on the block hanging open on the same morning. We’ve found crumpled up, opened envelopes in the middle of the street, etc.
I usually pick the mail up when I hear the mailman come, but to be on the safe side we got a mail chime like this one:
There seemed like a lot of signs of mail theft and we wanted the reminder to go get the mail when it arrived. Little did we know how often our chime would go off. Boy, were we shocked!
We’ve had the chime for a couple months now, and our mailbox has been opened by someone who is not us about once a week for at least the last 6 weeks. Usually on a weekend night. Usually around 11 p.m. – 1 a.m. Occasionally 4-5 a.m. Usually when it’s raining.
Twice we’ve run out and seen the people doing it, moving down our street opening one box after another. The first time it was a male and a female together with a huge black umbrella. We called the police. They said if we hadn’t actually *seen* them take mail out they didn’t care.
The next time we ran out there fast enough to see who it was, it was a woman by herself. Watched her take mail out of one of the neighbor’s boxes. Since the police hadn’t seemed interested, we tried to report it to the post office. But because it wasn’t *our* mail that we saw her take, they had no way for us to report it.
I’m alarmed that it’s so often and that the police and post office don’t seem very concerned. Seems like the thieves could be caught on film pretty easily given how often they’re coming.
I agree with the commenter in the previous post who said:
“Here’s a fun hobby project for you tech-savvy folks: if they can get good video of snow leopards in Kyrgyzstan with a camera trap, it couldn’t be too hard to bait a mailbox in Maple Leaf.”
Because surely the theft will just speed up now with Christmas coming.