U.S. Postal Inspector talks about recent mail thefts in Vestavia Hills
VESTAVIA HILLS, Ala. (WBRC) - Investigators are trying to piece together why thieves allegedly swiped a large amount of unopened mail from the post office.
Early in the morning on February 20th, a Vestavia Hills officer noticed someone fooling with the mail box outside the Cahaba Heights post office. Shortly thereafter, police caught up with that person and two others. Inside their car, police found 48 checks belonging to various people, a backpack filled with a large amount of unopened mail that also belonged to multiple people in the county. Cops also found firearms and marijuana.
“What these criminals are looking for is to come back in the dead of night and to steal mail so that they can glean identity, checks, so forth to either duplicate, counterfeit or just outright cash themselves,” Tony Robinson, the U.S. Postal Inspector for the Birmingham area said.
The U.S. Postal Inspection Service has been working with Vestavia Hills PD on the case. Robinson says this type of mail fraud is becoming more common around the country.
“With the dark web and all the internet entanglement, there is a loose network of criminals that are associated by family, friends and associates who are banning together to go after collection box mail in order to steal and make money,” Robinson said.
You can avoid becoming a victim by not dropping off mail after hours or just drop it off inside the post office. “Always deposit the mail before the last collection for the day and never stuff a mailbox that’s overflowing,” Robinson said.
Robinson says if you ever see this happening or become a victim, report it immediately.
At last check, three people have been detained. We’re told warrants will come at a later date. Investigators believe thieves have been targeting post offices around the Birmingham metro.
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