The holidays are stressful for many, which can lead to poor decisions for those who are strapped for cash. There are cases where individuals commit theft to cover the cost of family gifts or holiday celebrations. In other instances, individuals take advantage of convenient holiday situations to steal from others. In one Maryland county, the week before Christmas saw an increase in mail theft complaints.
According to information released by the sheriff's office, numerous neighborhoods were experiencing mail theft. The report notes that mail was stolen from private residences in a neighborhood on both Dec. 20 and Dec. 21. The police were able to recover some evidence, and an investigation is pending.
The next two days, police officers found opened mail scattered around the grounds of another neighborhood. According to reports, this evidence was located after six mailboxes were pilfered. On Christmas Eve, another neighborhood was hit; mail from two addresses was found in another location.
According to police officers, in most of the reported mail theft cases, the individuals left behind certain pieces of mail. Officers believe that the individuals committing the crimes were only removing mail that looked like it could be a Christmas card. They might also have removed packages.
Police believe that the individuals stealing the mail were searching envelopes for cash or gift cards. According to police, opened mail and cards were found scattered throughout the neighborhoods, indicating the individuals discarded mail after removing any contents they desired to keep.
Even if the individuals did not find money or gift cards in the mail, they can be charged with serious crimes. Tampering with or stealing mail can lead to serious consequences. In most cases, federal charges could be levied. Those who are facing such charges may want to speak with an experienced legal professional in order to carefully weigh their options.
Source: TheBayNet.com, "Mail theft incidents in Charles County" No author given, Dec. 30, 2013