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Thieves targeting mailboxes in South Jordan



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SOUTH JORDAN — Thieves are targeting mailboxes in South Jordan and police want to bring attention to what's going on and keep it from happening again. Twenty-two thefts have been reported since March 29, and there may be many more.

Victim David Colton said the flag on his mailbox was an invitation to the thieves who stole from it. It took just 15 minutes for thieves to throw a wrench in he and his wife Maralyn's day.

"I opened up the mailbox, put four letters in there that had checks in them, closed it up (and) put this out, which is our flag for it," Colton said. "And then I got in the car to go to the bank."

Colton is the latest victim in the almost two dozen cases of mail thefts across South Jordan. Thieves targeted him around 10 a.m. Monday.

"They were either watching me or they were very opportunistic," he said. "They came as I drove away."

The only reason Colton knew crooks took his mail is because his neighbor chased down two suspects in a white car.

South Jordan Police detective Sam Winkler said victims aren't usually so lucky — this is a crime of opportunity.

"Most people go to work 8 o'clock in the morning, come home 5 o'clock in the evening," Winkler said. "It's a very large window of opportunity when these crimes are taking place."

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If it happens to you — it can cause long-term problems ranging from check fraud to identity theft. Winkler said they can use all the money in your accounts and then cash checks all over again, which could result in creditors looking for you.

Winkler recommended that residents use the post office to send and receive mail.

Meanwhile, the Coltons are spending the rest of their day closing accounts and calling creditors because the checks stolen from the mailbox this morning are tied to four bank accounts. Maralyn used one of those accounts take care of her elderly mother.

"You feel attacked," she said. "You feel like someone's taken something from you."

Police have little information to go on with these mailbox thefts except descriptions of a few cars.

They've asked residents to be more watchful and call police if they see anything suspicious.

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