Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Silver Lake resident warns neighbors of mail theft

Photo by Jill Reed/Flickr

After leaving placed some outgoing mail–a Netflix DVD and a pair of envelopes with personal checks— in her mail slot, A.G. of Silver Lake heard the lid of her mail slot clank on Monday morning after it was opened and closed. Her mail was gone but it was not a postal worker who took it. A.G., who lives west of Silver Lake Boulevard near Berkeley Street, explains what happened:

I heard my mail slot cover clank but never heard the mail truck. So, I looked out to the street from my upstairs window and saw a young man get into a black Dodge Charger that was being driven by someone else and take off. I didn’t have time to get the license plate number. But I have reported it to the USPS Inspector General for the area. I just thought this should get posted in some way, so people can be on the lookout b/c I doubt my mail was the only mail that was stolen.

A.G. also discovered that mail theft is investigated by the U.S. Postal Service – no the LAPD. “I went to file a report with the [Northeast] Police division on San Fernando Road and they refused to do anything. “

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  1. I had a similar incident a little over a year ago (in Eagle Rock). An outgoing check for like 20 bucks for the LA Times (yep, I still subscribe to the paper!) was stolen out of my mailbox; I was alerted by my bank that someone had actually “washed” the check (lifted the ink off) and rewrote it out to himself (presumably) for $1,500! Luckily my forged signature was so off that the bank wouldn’t honor it. I always regretted not reporting it to the police but I guess now I know it wouldn’t have mattered.

  2. Hane — that happened to me many years ago. But my stolen check was cashed (shocking because it was so obviously altered as I discovered when the check was returned to me). Must be an old-school thief to still “wash” a check! As I recall, the USPS inspectors investigated the theft — from right out in front of the Los Feliz PO — and the LAPD looked into the fraudulent check cashing. As far as I know, neither crime was ever solved.

  3. Adding to this… Everyone remember to tear up/shred those “Balance Transfer” checks the credit card companies send out. I got lazy and didn’t and someone went through my recycling bin, found some & cashed one for $2500.00! Am in the dispute charge process with the credit card company & they just sent me a copy of the cashed check. The signature looks nothing like mine & hopefully, like in the above post, they will clear the charges and all fees as well. I’m on Parkman Ave. off marathon. Just a reminder to anyone that gets these offers.. wish they would stop this type of thing. Seems like such an obvious way to scam some money!

  4. Hard lesson to learn but saying the LAPD “refused to do anything” is a loaded way of implying they could have done something. Postal crimes are a federal offense and not in their jurisdiction.

  5. Lived here since 1976 and have never left mail in my mailbox. Either give it directly to my mailman if I see him or drive it to the Edendale post office which has a nice drive-in lane. Instinctive – because I was robbed so many silly times for stupid stuff in my neighborhood. I thought for sure I’d get robbed this way. Sorry. Just a reality of life here in the big city. Police didn’t do anything the two times I had break-ins and the several times my car was broken into for the purpose of being robbed. So not sure it would matter if it were under their jurisdiction. Need a neighborhood watch — trust among neighbors. Two times neighbors saved me.

  6. I have mail go missing all the time, I believe it to be the scum bags who leave the supermarket coupons in my mail box every day!!!!!!

  7. I agree, our police barely investigate burglaries so I’m sure the mail is even less a concern.

  8. Delivered packages stolen.

    Oh boy. I’m in Silver Lake, in the area between Myra/Fountain/Sunset/Hoover. Have been here for over 18 months and for the first time, just this week, I’ve had a rash of missing packages delivered by UPS, USPS, and OnTrac. Really lousy. Total is up to $450 I’m out. Going to try to get through to all the carriers and hopefully have a notice left on my accounts to never leave packages at the front door again. Stupid thieves got some really mundane loot though, like textbooks and laundry detergent. Wish I knew where in the world they were dumping my stuff that they surely have no interest in. Sickening.

  9. Will Campbell, I appreciate your response. Mail theft is investigated by the USPS, while crimes involving check fraud, burglary, and (other) theft are investigated by the LAPD. Investigations begin with a victim filing a crime report.

    I work at LAPD Northeast, currently assigned to our Crime Analysis – War Room. This unit supports detectives’ investigations, and I can assure you that our detectives do an outstanding job of following up on every lead. The LAPD will scour hours of surveillance video, check pawn shops and online outlets, conduct parole/probation compliance checks of past offenders, and pass on trends to other units. We do not solve every crime, but we will track down every possible lead and develop strategies to address emerging crime trends.

    @Delivered packages stolen, if you have not yet done so, I encourage you to report the thefts. We will investigate, check for possible surveillance video or witnesses, and otherwise attempt to identify the suspect(s) responsible and bring them to justice.

    Officer Scheerer
    [email protected]

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