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Postal Inspector: Mail carriers held at gunpoint during cluster thefts in Sacramento

More than 40 Sacramento residents living in the Pocket and Greenhaven neighborhoods packed the nearby library Wednesday where a city postal inspector addressed continuing cluster mailbox thefts.

One woman at the meeting even said her mail was stolen earlier that day.

Pocket-Greenhaven Community Association member Steve Lightstone hosted postal inspector Jeff Fitch, along with a representative of Congresswoman Doris Matsui and a representative for the Sacramento Police Department.

They said most cluster mailbox thefts being reported in the area result from mail carriers being robbed of their master keys at gunpoint.

Lightstone pulled up a slideshow presentation that he said showed about 250 locations across the Pocket area where cluster mailbox thefts have been reported the past two years.

He said lack of criminal convictions regarding mail theft is causing residents to lose hope in trusting the police or postal service to meaningfully address the thefts.

“I don’t know of a single neighborhood with a cluster mailbox that hasn’t been targeted by thieves. They’re getting money, medicine, IDs, rebate cards—all that stuff,” he said.

Counterfeit keys can also be produced to bust into cluster mailboxes.

Fitch said even after the master keys assigned to particular zones are reported stolen or compromised, mail carriers are given a copy of the same key as they wait for replacement locks to be installed.