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Thieves stealing from Ontario mailboxes

Ontario, N.Y. New York State Police are warning residents in Ontario, Wayne County about a rash of thefts from area mailboxes.

Police say several people have had packages and checks stolen from their mailboxes and sometimes the thefts happened during the day.

Last week, Tim Henry got a notification that his Amazon.com orders had been delivered to his mailbox at home. When he got home, the packages were nowhere to be found.

When I went to the post office they told me that there were other, similar cases going on that day, Henry recalled.

His next door neighbor, Nancy Hepburn, says her mailwoman personally delivered a package to her door because of the recent thefts.

She came to the door and delivered them to me and stated that a lot of houses in the area are getting their packages taken right of their mailboxes, so to be safe, she just delivered them right to the door, Hepburn said.

The thieves are also taking checks from mailboxes that have their red flags up.

We've had a number of complaints where people have left bills in their outgoing mail, says Mark ODonnell of the New York State Police. They flipped up their flags to let the mailman know they have outgoing mail and someone took the bills which contained checks. [The thieves] traded new checks with them because they have the account number, routing number and [the victims] names and address.
So far, some victims have had thousands of dollars stolen from them.

ODonnell recommends that people have packages delivered to the post office and instead of leaving checks in the mail for the mailman to pick up, he says its safer to drop off the checks at a secure mailbox at the post office.

Also, state police are asking residents to look out for suspicious activity in their neighborhoods and call police if they feel something doesnt seem right.

Angela Hong, 13WHAM-TV
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