WESLEY CHAPEL, Fla. — Neighbors in a Wesley Chapel Neighborhood say their mail has been taken out of their mailboxes. They say it’s happened multiple times on different days during all hours in the Ashton Oaks subdivision.
“People work hard for what they have and it’s wrong. If you want something, work for it,” said one neighbor.
Neighbors say dozens of people have shared very similar stories on a neighborhood Facebook page.
The thieves tend to be targeting mailboxes with their flags up. Neighbors say they’ve seen them go from mailbox to mailbox and grab what’s inside and then take off.
A security camera caught those thieves last Tuesday after one woman put a few bills in the box and lifted the flag.
"I got back around 10 o’clock and I saw the flag went down but I thought maybe the mailman just came earlier,” she said.
Another woman says the ink on a check she put in the mailbox for $74 was somehow changed to $1,500 and made out to someone she doesn’t know. They think these people are experienced.
"To be able to do that without disturbing that watermark that tells you, you’re not dealing with just some Joe Schmoe, you’re dealing with someone who is knowledgeable in the criminal field,” said another neighbor.
The United States Postal Service says hand letters directly into your carriers hand or go to the post office and grab your mail, or have a trusted neighbor get it, as soon as the mailman leaves the box.
Click here for more tips and to report mail theft.
Officials say a neighborhood watch program where trusted neighbors exchange work and vacation schedules can be a good solution too.
"I just hope the people are more aware of their surroundings. If you see something say something,” said one neighbor.