By Mary O’KEEFE
A man jumped a counter at the La Crescenta Post Office at about 8 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 9 and stole a box of mail. Anyone who mailed items at the La Crescenta Post Office between the hours of 5 p.m. on Saturday and 8 p.m. on Sunday is advised to submit a Mail Theft and Vandalism Complaint with the post office.
The U.S. Postal Service is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of an individual or individuals responsible for the burglary at the La Crescenta Post Office.
“It is very unusual for [someone] to burglarize a post office like this and to only take mail,” said Renee Focht, U.S. Postal Inspector spokeswoman.
The suspect is described as a black male about six feet tall, and at the time of the incident was wearing a plaid shirt, jeans, boots, a purple team cap and possibly wearing a mask, according to the U.S. Postal Inspection Service press release.
A surveillance video shows the man entering the back room of the post office, jump over the counter, and grab a box containing mail, jumped back over the counter and leave.
The post office is located at the corner of Maryland Avenue and Foothill Boulevard at 3300 Foothill Blvd. On Sunday the doors to the lobby were open however the main post office room was closed.
“[The area] where you walk in where the post office boxes are was open. [The suspect] broke into the area [behind the mail slots] that are on the wall,” Focht said.
Focht said she was in the area until the early evening on Tuesday. She observed
how busy the area was especially the veterinarian hospital across from the post office on Maryland Avenue. She hoped someone remembers seeing something that could lead to the suspect.
“The [suspect] took the outgoing mail,” Focht added.
Customers who deposited mail that was collected during the times indicated above should contact the post office.
After spending some time at the La Crescenta Post Office, Focht said she realized that residents are part of a close-knit community. She advised residents who did mail during the designated times to go into the office and talk to the post office workers about their concerns.
“If you mailed a check [it is advised to] put a stop payment on that check,” she said.
Reporting the theft not only helps the customer but also the inspectors. If a check that has been cashed is traced back to the burglary it may help inspectors to identify the suspect, Focht said.
For those customers affected a theft report can be filed online at postalinspectors.uspis.gov or call (877) 876-2455 and select option three, or go into the post office.
Anyone with information concerning this burglary is asked to call Postal Inspectors at (877) 876-3455, select option two and refer to case number 1861003. Callers can remain anonymous.
The video surveillance is available for viewing at www.cvweekly.com or for those with a reader scan the QR code is to the right.