Alleged Seattle mail thief caught, authorities searching for others

May 25, 2023, 1:49 PM | Updated: 2:54 pm

Seattle mail thief...

Federal authorities said they’ve arrested a man suspected of numerous mail thefts, including one that shut down deliveries to parts of South Seattle two weeks ago. (Photo by Michael Bocchieri/Getty Images)

(Photo by Michael Bocchieri/Getty Images)

Federal prosecutors reported they have a man in custody after a series of mail thefts in South Seattle, but there may be more accomplices on the loose.

At one apartment complex, staff stated multiple people got into their building using a master mail key.

Alleged thief caught, suspected of stealing South Seattle mail

One witness, Erin Keely, said they saw a thief break into a mail truck and took boxes of mail.

“Someone got out with crowbars, smashed the glass, grabbed two huge boxes of mail, and drove off. I was a little stunned,” Keely said. “I tried to get down the description of the person and car and license plate, and I did track down the delivery person and tell her about it, and she says it’s just been chaotic.”

The 27-year-old man is a suspect in a series of mail vehicle and mail key thefts dating back to December of last year.

Authorities said he stole master keys and used them to open mailboxes across the Seattle area. Officials claim they’re trying to find anyone the alleged thief worked with.

“The U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) has worked diligently to get [the suspect] and his coconspirators into custody,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

In the meantime, neighbors worry their mail could be stolen or halted for precaution all over again.

Hannah Highberg lives in the area and said a lack of clear communication from the postal service left her and others in the dark.

“We never got any additional information. Everything that we found, we had to look up a lot of places that didn’t have the annex address on it,” Highberg said. “We had to find it ourselves essentially.”

More from Sam Campbell: King County sees uptick in highway violence this year

She and others said USPS did not tell them specifically if their mail had been stolen, how the thieves got into it in the first place, or where exactly they had to go to get their parcels. It remains unclear just how many people have been impacted.

USPS assured customers that they are improving their security measures.

“It’s a little sad that we live in a world where you can’t even have your bills or something important delivered to your home address. You have to have a second pit stop,” Keely said.

Follow Sam Campbell on Twitter or email him here

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Alleged Seattle mail thief caught, authorities searching for others