St. Louis-area mail carriers express concern after recent burglaries

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by Ray Preston / News 4 and KMOV.com staff

KMOV.com

Posted on November 14, 2012 at 11:44 AM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 14 at 7:48 PM

ST. LOUIS (KMOV) -- It is a federal crime to steal U.S. Mail, and the crime carries stiff penalties, but that’s not stopping some thieves.

On October 23 in the 4700 block of St. Louis Avenue a mail carrier got out of her van to make deliveries. A man standing nearby could be seen on security footage smashing the window of a truck and stealing the mail out of the back.

“We don’t believe the thief knew what was actually there,” said Postal Inspector Dan Taylor. “It was just a package with postage on it.”

The package turned out to be filled with electronics.

Three weeks prior a mail carrier was robbed while on her rounds.

“In that instance he demanded her vehicle keys, opened up her vehicle, grabbed some mail and ran,” said Taylor.  

Postal workers News 4 talked with say they’re seeing a different attitude on the streets.

In the past they were part of a neighborhood- a daily presence and were pretty much respected and left alone to do their jobs.

Now, attitudes seem to be changing. Postal officials stop short of saying it’s a trend, but do say the brazenness of the thieves does seem to be increasing.

“There does seem to be some kind of a shift in these criminals and anybody in wrong place, wrong time can become a victim,” said Taylor.

Some mail carriers say they’re afraid that with the upcoming holiday season and a lot of gifts being sent through the mail they may become more of a target, but Taylor says they don’t necessarily see an increase in thefts this time of year.

As for that mail carrier who was robbed, there’s a $25,000 reward in the case.

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