CEDAR PARK, Texas - The robbery happened at a neighborhood postal collection box in Cedar Park near the intersection of New Hope and Yaupon Trail. Investigators say Saturday morning shortly before 10:00 two men approached a Postal Service Letter Carrier.
"I do think this was a crime of opportunity, but I do think there was some preplanning involved in this,” said Cedar Park Police Commander Darlene Lewis.
Investigators are not disclosing what was taken.
"There were no weapons involved in this … as far as we know, there were no injuries,” said Commander Lewis.
The description of the two robbers is limited. So are details regarding the white four-door sedan they drove off in.
The incident not only caught the letter carrier off guard but also residents like Carol Margeson. “It was just kind of strange being that it was early in the morning and out in broad daylight you know, because the postman‘s, he’s here every day,” said Margeson.
The Cedar Park robbery may be a reflection of a larger national trend. Many people are choosing no-contact shopping during the viral outbreak, and that's being linked to an increase in package thefts.
According to a report issued in June by ValuePenguin; 18% of consumers, who took part in its survey, said they have experienced package theft since March. That’s nearly 1 in 5 during the peak of the pandemic. Despite the increased risk for theft, the survey also found a third of those who were victimized in the past year have taken no action to prevent future thefts.
"The mail carries gift cards, there is a lot of merchandise that's exchanged. Credit cards, debit cards, there's a lot for financial gain at a mailbox area, so we encourage everyone to please be aware of your surroundings, anything that you can do to make sure your mail is not sitting in the mailbox, to help reduce being susceptible to mail theft,” said Commander Lewis.
Tracking delivery times and getting a neighbor to hold deliveries are also ways to reduce the chances of a crime of opportunity. Joe Perez, who lives down the street from where the Cedar Park robbery happened, says he plans to keep a closer watch.
“I am being more aware of my surroundings and you know looking out at night and looking around and make sure everything is locked,” said Perez.
Mail theft and the robbery of a letter carrier may be crimes of opportunity but they come with a high price to pay. They're federal crimes punishable by up to 10 years in prison.