MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – Residents of a southwest Miami-Dade neighborhood are banding together in an effort to thwart thieves they say have been relentlessly targeting their mailboxes.
The thieves have been caught on surveillance camera stealing mail from residents in the Lime Wood Grove neighborhood in the county’s Richmond West area.
Resident Lillie Critchfield said they come by “almost every day.”
“They’re coming at different times, different vehicles,” Critchfield said. “We’re trying to really be very proactive, but we haven’t been able to really catch up with them.”
Critchfield says she’s reported the crimes to Miami-Dade police and U.S. postal inspectors and has even tried to find a pattern.
Now, residents are organizing online, alerting each other when the postal carrier leaves the mail, so they can grab it before it’s stolen.
They also share motion alerts and videos.
“It is very frustrating and the possibilities of whatever they can be doing with this mail, identity theft or anything else, is more worrisome,” Critchfield said.
Resident Jonathan Insignares described how the thieves operate.
“All the ads and all that is thrown out,” he said. “They take whatever they need and leave the rest.”
Thefts of mail and robberies of postal workers for mailbox keys have become a growing problem in South Florida.
Authorities urge people to not leave mail in their mailboxes overnight.
Anyone with information is asked to call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-8477.