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Take precautions to avoid mail theft, officials say

With security cameras now on the porches of many homes, some residents are wondering if their mailboxes are also targets for thieves.

Posted: Dec 5, 2019 9:57 AM

EUGENE, Ore. -- With security cameras now on the porches of many homes, some residents are wondering if their mailboxes are also targets for thieves.

Adam Sale, a mail inspector with the U.S. Postal Service, said collecting your mail as soon as you get the chance is extremely important.

"The biggest thing that we tell our customers is they should not leave mail overnight in a mailbox. It doesn't matter if it's a locking mail box or not. They shouldn't leave parcels on their porch," said Sale. 

The U.S. Postal Service reports that in 2018, postal inspectors arrested almost 2,500 suspects accused of mail theft.

A Eugene Police Department crime prevention officer, Jeff Blondé, agreed that residents should collect their mail out of their box as soon as they can after delivery. 

"It's only as good as the tools that are being used to defeat it. What we always say in crime prevention is given enough time and tools, the thieves will find a way to get into something or take something," Blondé said. 

One Eugene resident is concerned that an important piece of mail he was expecting has been stolen. 

"I've been struggling for the last week and a half trying to find out where a check that was supposed to be sent to me was, and I have not heard back yet," said Lonni Harden. 

Sale said residents need to be extremely cautious as the holiday season begins and should collect their mail and lock their mailboxes every day. 

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