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Bill Jones, Editor
2:49 pm CST March 4, 2020

Postal inspectors confirmed they are still looking into reports of mail taken in January from a blue box outside of a Post Office in Orland Park.

Several area residents reported to The Orland Park Prairie that they recently learned of mail they placed in a blue box at the Post Office at 9500 W. 144th Place not reaching its destinations through past-due notices and other indicators of checks not being received.

“Our office has received information from residents in the Orland Park area regarding issues with their mail,” Chicago Division Postal Inspector Silvia Carrier confirmed by email to The Orland Park Prairie. “Postal inspectors are conducting a criminal  investigation related to these specific complaints.

“Based on the investigation, we believe theft from the blue box occurred in early January on two occasions. Based on the information we’ve received from affected customers, 50 pieces of mail were in the boxes at the time, but we cannot conclude an exact amount.”

Residents said they wish more was being done by the Post Office to alert customers that a theft took place from one of its boxes.

Carrier said the postal inspectors were not notified until later in January by customers who were affected. Carrier added that “when information is developed that could involve more than one postal customer, a notice will be sent to residences in the affected area.”

She also noted that anyone who thinks their personal information or bank accounts have been compromised should file a report with their local police departments. And Orland Park Police Lt. Ken Rosinski confirmed that police have taken “numerous reports of mail thefts” and have been forwarding that information to postal inspectors. He also said “many” identity theft cases “have come from the theft of mail.”

Customers also said they want to know what measures are being taken to make sure this does not happen again.

Silvia did not provide any further information on what is being done to address the issue specifically at this Post Office, and noted that because the investigation is “ongoing” she could not provide additional details on the incidences of theft there. She encouraged customers to place outgoing mail in the blue collection boxes before the last pickup of the day, hand mail directly to a carrier or drop it off inside of a Post Office to reduce risk of theft.

If a resident thinks they have been a victim of mail theft, they should contact the U.S. Postal Inspection Service at (877) 876-2455 or visit www.uspis.gov. Complaints regarding delivery can be directed to the local Post Office.