Rash of mail thefts in Bonita neighborhood

Posted at 6:58 PM, Jun 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-01 18:58:41-04

BONITA SPRINGS, Fla.- A rash of mail thefts have residents in one Bonita Springs neighborhood frustrated. Neighbors in the San Carlos Estates community say the brazen thieves are getting away with everything from packages to mail containing personal information.

"We'll get up in the morning, and every single mailbox on the street will be open," said Dena Wilcoxen, who lives on Stillwell Parkway. She is the secretary for the San Carlos Estates homeowners association.

While the open mailboxes are one calling card left by thieves, Wilcoxen said that other times, they have been more brazen.

"Somebody was following the mail truck, and the gentleman was actually home," she said. "(He) saw somebody trying to take the package that the mail delivery person had just dropped off. And he yelled at them, and they left."

Unfortunately, he didn't get a very good description of the person or their vehicle.

"I myself have called the sheriff's office twice," Wilcoxen said. "They have told me that the best thing we can do is get it on camera."

She said they also told her to alert the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

Barry Coburn, who resides on Whip O WIll Lane several blocks east of Stillwell Parkway, said that people on his street have had checks stolen from their mailboxes. 

"It's a shame," Coburn said. "You shouldn't have to worry about your mail like that, you know?"

Wilcoxen said that she and others are taking steps to stamp out the crimes themselves.

"We're having to spend money on locking mailboxes or camera systems, for somebody who just wants to take from somebody else," she said.

Stealing mail is a federal crime and is investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. To report a case of mail theft, call them 1-800-275-8777.