Police Warn: Checks & More Being Stolen Out of Orange County Mailboxes
Stolen checks have reportedly been deposited in local banks.
It seems like almost every day we have the unfortunate job of reporting some sort of theft in the Hudson Valley. We told you the other day about a rise in lawn equipment thefts in Dutchess County and today we get to warn you about the possibility of someone stealing your mail.
Like most houses in the Hudson Valley, if you have a mailbox at the end of your driveway, police from The Town of Montgomery Police Department have issued a warning for the residents of the Orange County town and everyone in Ulster, Dutchess, and Sullivan Counties.
Stolen Mail Warning
The Town of Montgomery Police Department posted the warning on Facebook, "Attention Town of Montgomery residents, businesses, and surrounding communities! There is an ongoing pattern of stolen mail and checks from mailboxes involving numerous jurisdictions in Orange and Dutchess counties." Police say that once the criminals steal the mail they go through it and if they find any checks they attempt to use the mobile deposit feature at various banks.
Police are encouraging residents to do what they can to NOT mail any checks! If you are expecting a check in the mail, police are encouraging you to check your mailboxes as close to mail delivery time as possible.
How Can a Check Made Out to Me be Cashed by Someone Else?
Police say that some criminals that steal checks will often use a check washing system. According to Wikipedia, stolen checks will be "washed" in an effort to erase the details of the check so the thieves can rewrite it to include information that will make it possible for them to cash them.
How to Prevent Stolen Mail
Bets thing to do is sign up for 'Informed Delivery" from the United States Postal Service. Once enrolled users are sent digital images of the mail they are getting that day so you know what should be in their mailbox. If you don't get that mail, you go back to the USPS site and report that you didn't get it and they will investigate. You can sign up here.
Anyone that has had mail and/or checks stolen from their mailboxes is being asked to contact their local Police Department to report it as soon as possible.