‘It’s really frustrating’: Police, victim warn others about mail theft
WEST JORDAN, Utah – Home security cameras captured an SUV pulling up to mailboxes in a West Jordan neighborhood on Sunday morning.
“He pulled a handful of stuff out of there, threw it in his car, and then took off,” said Al Edenfield.
Edenfield describes the suspect’s SUV as a silver Ford Edge and said the driver was wearing a mask.
“He opened mine. He got everything out of it and then he also threw some trash out,” he said. “The trash was a FedEx package from a neighbor down the street and around the corner.”
Edenfield said the hard thing is not knowing what pieces of mail the thief stole.
“I’m expecting a title to one of our cars to come in the mail and I don’t know if it was in there or not,” he said.
He reported the crime to the police and hopes the video evidence helps in the investigation. Even so, he’s still left worrying.
“I don’t know if they are going to try to steal my identity,” Edenfield said.
Mail theft is a year-round crime, but West Jordan police said during tax season residents have more sensitive documents showing up in the mailbox.
“It’s a crime of opportunity,” Officer Ramon Ramirez said.
Ramirez said mailboxes can be full of key pieces of information, especially tax documents, like salaries, Social Security numbers, and names of employers.
“They can go and get loans out or even distribute that information on the dark web,” he said. “And then just that frustration of having to deal with the banks, the Social Security office, and trying to get that information canceled.”
Ramirez said some don’t even realize their mail has been stolen. He suggests opting to get important documents electronically.
Edenfield encourages others to check their mailbox and retrieve their mail every day.
“If we would have checked it we wouldn’t be worrying about anything right now,” he said. “We’re hard-working people. We go to work every day and to have somebody just driving around stealing people’s property it’s really frustrating. It feels like you’re violated.”
The United States Postal Inspection Service offers the following tips to protect yourself against mail and package theft:
- Promptly pick up your mail
- Inquire about overdue mail
- Don’t send cash
- Arrange for pickup using the hold mail service
- Request signature confirmation
- If you move, file a change of address
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