Some Chowchilla Residents Fighting Mail Theft with Technology

They’re the only signs of life on some Madera County roads. Trucks driving through, and mailboxes.

“We are pretty much in the middle of nowhere,” almond farmer David Campbell said. “So, there are some crimes of opportunity.”

Campbell has lived in Chowchilla 20 years.

His mailbox is state of the art. It cost about $250 and can only be unlocked with a code.

“Checks, sometimes bills, you don’t want to miss those either,” Campbell said.

Others are not as well protected.

Commander Bill Ward with the Madera County Sheriff’s Office says, there’ve been several incidents in July.

“It literally takes seconds for somebody to stop, grab your mail and take off,” Ward said.

Deputies say, two men were reportedly stealing mail here on road 15 1/2 July 16th.

Two days later, deputies got a call a woman was possibly doing the same here, on Robertson Boulevard.

Two weeks later, deputies arrested this woman, Oakhurst resident Jocelynn Gray, in a separate stop. They say she had stolen mail in her car.

“I want to say over 100 pieces of mail,” Ward said.

Then deputies say, the July arrests of Salvador Viera and Monica Sanchez, both of Chowchilla, led them to this. Mail and a stolen Marine Corps ring.

“We know it’s stolen,” Ward said. “We just don’t know who it belongs to.”

Deputies recommend handing mail directly to carriers or taking it to the post office, reminding all not to leave letters or bills in the mailbox overnight.

Reporting in Madera County, Megan Rupe.

t_2olyCL.jpg?v=21 Chowchilla News Day
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