Darien Police Department on Thursday afternoon issued this statement to town residents thinking of mailing items, especially checks, from outdoor mailboxes, including the ones outside Darien and Noroton Heights Post Offices.
Police are trying to get the Post Office to install theft-deterrent mailboxes, the announcement said. As for what you can do to help avoid getting victimized, police say town residents should “take steps to safeguard their outgoing mail.”
Here’s the announcement:
The Darien Police Department continues to receive complaints in regards to articles of outgoing mail being stolen from inside United State Post Office depositories.
From the stolen mail, any outgoing checks are removed and altered. The altered checks are then deposited into private, often fraudulent/stolen bank accounts, causing a loss to the victim.
Oftentimes, the victim is initially unaware of the fraudulent activity until notified by their bank or the original payee of the check after having not received it.
Other towns in Fairfield County are experiencing instances of mail theft in a similar manner. The Darien police are working with our local post offices in an effort to have depositories upgraded to theft deterrent models seen elsewhere.
The Darien Police have made several arrests in these cases, and continue to work with both the United States Postal Inspectors Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation on the remaining incidents.
As our primary concern is the safety and well-being of our residents, we urge anyone mailing anything of value, … [including] checks, to take steps to safeguard their outgoing mail. In addition to valuables, personal and identifying information may be harvested from the stolen mail.
Recent articles on mailbox thefts:
- Check Mailing Roulette: Two More Reports of Checks Stolen from Outdoor Post Office Mailbox (Jan. 21)
- Police: Thousands of Dollars Stolen from Checks in a Mailbox — on a Shoestring Budget (Oct. 30)
- Another Case of Mail Theft from Late October / Early November Reported to Police (Dec. 22)
- Thieves Go Once More Into the Darien Post Office Drop-Off Boxes (Dec. 27)