A Postal Service worker has been arrested on suspicion of stealing mail and cashing stolen checks in Yonkers, where mail theft has plagued the neighborhood for months.
Lorell Legrand, 30, resigned from the Postal Service after police said she was caught stealing mail with bank information from dropboxes in the neighborhood of Yonkers and Seminary avenues.
Legrand and others are accused of defrauding dozens of victims out of more than $650,000. Most of the victims are seniors.
"Postal service worker going postal on our postal system is something that is certainly not going to be tolerated here," Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said.
Investigators also charged Shaquille Wiltshire, 22, with cashing checks stolen from the dropboxes. Wiltshire lives in the same building as Legrand.
Over the past several months, police in Yonkers have received 95 reports of stolen mail and money. Surveillance images show a thief dipping their arm into a mailbox on South Broadway near Herriot Street.
The postal service is working to upgrade mailboxes in the area.
"One thing you can notice about this mailbox is it has a slit now, as opposed to opening a drawer to get into the mailbox," Westchester District Attorney deputy chief Steven Vandervelden said. "That will assist in mitigating the issue of fishing into mailboxes."
Legrand faces three counts of identity theft and one charge of grand larceny.
Investigators said she deposited forged checks into her bank account after targeting the following locations:
Mailbox at Shonnard Place and Convent Avenue
Mailbox at Yonkers and Seminary avenues
Mailbox at Page Avenue and Westerly Street
Post Office at 915 Yonkers Ave.
Police said Legrand worked for the post office for about a year prior to her arrest on June 5. She has been remanded to the Westchester County jail with bail set at $35,000. She's due in court on June 25.
"If you're going to engage in this type of fraud, we're going to find you, we're going to arrest you and we're going to prosecute you and hold you fully accountable for your actions," Yonkers Police Commissioner Charles Gardner said.
Anyone with information regarding mail theft should call Yonkers police at 914-377-7730.