Chief's Column: Protect Your Mail This Holiday Season

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Grafton Police Chief Norman Crepeau Jr. Photo Credit: Jennifer Lord Paluzzi (file photo)

GRAFTON, Mass. - The Grafton Police Department would like to remind residents to take extra care this time of year when having mail and packages delivered to their residence.  Please review the following suggestions to help protect yourself and your belongings.

Protect Outgoing Mail and Packages:

  • Do not leave mail with checks or money orders in your personal mailbox for pickup by the mail carrier. Take your mail to a postal collection box.  These boxes are safer and more secure because they are locked.
  • Further protect yourself by taking your mail to a post office and handing it to a postal worker yourself.
  • Never send cash in the mail.
  • Do not leave packages on your front porch for pick up by private carriers.  Using FedEx or UPS does not mean your packages will be safer.  Often, when drivers deliver packages, they leave them sitting on the front porch. During the holidays, thieves will drive around neighborhoods looking for boxes on porches to steal.
  • If you are sending a package, let the person you are sending it to know that it is coming and when to expect it to arrive so they can make arrangements for pick up.
  • Insure any packages you are sending for the replacement cost of the items shipped.  Most carriers and the Postal Service offer insurance.

Protect Incoming Mail and Packages:

  • Promptly retrieve your mail.  The United States Postal Inspection Service strongly recommends that you pick up mail from your mailbox as soon as possible after delivery, especially if you are expecting to receive a check or merchandise.
  • If you can’t pick up your mail each day, ask a trusted friend or neighbor to do it for you. The Postal Service can also hold your mail if you’ll be traveling during the holidays.
  • Report Mail Theft: Many of the arrests made by Postal Inspectors are related to mail theft.   If you receive mail with the contents missing or fail to receive mail you were expecting, you may be a victim of mail fraud. Contact the shipper first to be sure the items were sent properly. If you determine that the shipper was not at fault, immediately file a complaint with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service

Anyone with questions for the Chief’s Column may submit them by mail to the Grafton Police Department, 28 Providence Road, Grafton, MA 01519.  You may also email your questions or comments to chief@graftonpolice.com.  Please include an appropriate subject line, as I do not open suspicious email for obvious reasons.

Happy Holidays from the members of the Grafton Police Department

Normand A. Crepeau, Jr.

Chief of Police

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