Thieves use sticky traps to steal mail in New Jersey

Posted: Updated:
PATERSON -

Thieves using sticky traps have been stealing mail from post office boxes across New Jersey.

The latest case was reported in Paterson. Authorities say that the thieves take sticky traps typically used for vermin and stick them on the mailbox slots or use them to fish for mail.

Paterson Councilwoman Ruby Cotton says that she recently had it happen to her.

"When you put mail in the mailbox you should open it and open it again and make sure it's gone down.  And when I did that, I saw that it was still stuck,” she says.

She says that several senior citizens who use the mailbox located at Carroll and Ellison streets had their mail stolen.

"Sometimes you have seniors that will send out Christmas cards to grandchildren if they live in another state and sometimes they just put cash in their envelope,” Cotton says.

Paterson officials say that the mailbox located at Lakeview and Delaware avenues was also hit. 

"Specifically senior citizens.  There's one in particular, three times this has happened to her and it's from this mailbox,” says Councilman Andre Sayegh.

The United States Postal Service is now investigating the issue. The agency is suggesting that people who need to mail money take it directly to the post office or drop it in the mailbox close to one of the scheduled pickup times.

Authorities say that similar crimes have been reported in five counties around that state.

Mail theft is considered a federal crime.

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