UPDATE: Thieves steal thousand from people sending mail locally; postal inspector investigating

KETTERING — The United States Postal Inspection Service is now involved in the investigation into thefts that have victimized people out of thousands of dollars.

Kettering Police first started investigating a string of thefts from area post offices.

Between June 26 and June 30, detectives tell WHIO at least 16 people were victims to thieves who stole their mail from post office drop boxes, then cashed checks – some of them altered – to fraudulently get ahold of money.

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“Due to this being an ongoing investigation, we cannot release information on the investigation or investigative techniques as it could jeopardize it,” a spokeswoman for the postal service said in a statement.

Police said the most recent string of thefts in late June involved the Forrer Blvd. post office. In one case, detectives said thieves alerted an intercepted check, changing the amount from $10 to $1,625.

The total loss police have documented from the late June thefts is about $24,000. One couple, detectives said, is out more than $7,000.

According to detectives, five suspects have been cashing or attempting to cash the checks at numerous banks in southwest Ohio.

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Police are still trying to figure out who is actually stealing the mail from drop boxes, though, and hope the suspects who are actually cashing the checks can help them figure out who is behind the mail thefts.

Detectives believe the same mail thief or thieves involved in the recent string of thefts at the Forrer Blvd. post office was involved in thefts at the Stroop Road post office in April, and perhaps in a string of thefts News Center 7 reported on in the spring and summer of 2020.

As police continue working to identify potential victims to these recent crimes, Kettering Police recently posted on Facebook, anyone who, “within the last couple of months” has dropped checks in the mail at the Forrer Blvd. or Stroop Road post offices and noticed something unusual – such as the checks being returned as fraudulent or being cashed for a greater amount than written for – to contact detectives at the department.

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