Checks stolen from mailboxes can be washed, forged and cashed, Southern Pines police warn

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Monday, January 29, 2024
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SOUTHERN PINES, N.C. (WTVD) -- Checks stolen from mailboxes can be 'washed,' forged and cashed, NC police warns

The Southern Pines Police Department has issued a warning to people who have roadside mailboxes.

In a January 21 Facebook post, the police department says there has been an increase in mail stolen from those boxes. According to the SPPD, in every reported case checks were taken from the boxes.

Stolen checks can be "washed", which means they are being altered, forged and cashed by alleged thieves. If you observe suspicious persons or vehicles in your community or on a home security camera, please contact your local law enforcement agency.

Tips to protect yourself from ABC11 Troubleshooter

  • When it comes to your mailbox, don't let mail sit in there either, get it right away
  • Use online bill pay when possible. This will reduce the number of checks you write
  • If you must write a check, use a gel ink pen. Certain types of gel ink cannot be washed off because they permeate below the surface of the paper

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If you have information on this investigation, contact the Southern Pines Police Department at 910-692-7031. If you believe you are a victim of mail theft, you should report it to the local police and the Postal Inspection Service by calling the hotline at 877-876-2455 (say "theft") or on their website.

ALSO SEE: Thieves target postal carriers, mail drop-offs in attempt to steal your checks and money orders

Check crime in your area via the ABC11 Neighborhood Safety and Crime Tracker

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