Police are looking for the thieves who targeted a mailbox and robbed her at gunpoint in Uptown Charlotte.
A neighbor took a photo with his doorbell camera just before Wednesday’s robbery. It happened just before 4 p.m. in the Third Ward neighborhood on Westbrook Avenue.
Channel 9’s Genevieve Curtis discovered that the worker was on her route just before that attack.
9 FOCUS STORIES: Mail Theft Incidents
“I heard sirens, I came to the window in my house and looked out — there are half a dozen police cars. And I see the USPS lady,” neighbor Houston Cutshaw told Curtis.
Cutshaw said police filled the street after two suspects armed with a gun robbed the US Postal Service employee. He said detectives spent hours trying to get footage of the two men in a sedan.
“You wouldn’t think there would be a robbery in the middle of the day, especially with USPS delivery mail,” he said. “It’s just unexpected.”
Cutshaw gave detectives a video of that employee delivering his mail just before those suspects drove up and robbed her at gunpoint.
“Poor girl, she didn’t expect that, just delivering mail,” he said. “Probably there was nothing valuable in there, I wouldn’t think, but I don’t know what they were looking for.”
READ ALSO: USPS carrier accused of using universal key in stealing $40,000 checks
It appears they were looking for the USPS mailbox keys, as the suspects only stole those, according to the police report.
Channel 9 has reported on the alarming spike in US mail carriers being attacked over those master keys that allow thieves to break into mailboxes and steal checks. It’s an issue lawmakers on Capitol Hill are discussing this week.
“Mailman robberies have increased by 78%, resulting in nearly 500 robberies in 2022 alone,” said Maryland Rep. Kweisi Mfume.
There were no injuries in this attack. Curtis asked CMPD for any video of the suspects or vehicle from this latest attack.
“Hopefully they’ll have some footage of some of the doorbells so they can figure out who did this,” Cutshaw said.
Curtis reached out to the US Postal Workers Association for comment and they shared the following statement:
“This is a very dangerous situation. Mail-related street crime is spreading like wildfire and the postal service is fanning the flames by refusing to deploy postal police officers. It seems like a postman is being robbed every day and there is no sign of any coming to an end soon.
“What does it take for the Post to admit that it was a mistake to bench the Postal Police? It is even worse than simply refusing to admit that a mistake has been made. The Postal Inspectorate actively fights against the possibility of using PPOs. In other words, the Inspectorate does not want the possibility to use PPOs, because it would be indefensible not to use PPOs otherwise.
“Can you imagine a law enforcement agency not wanting the opportunity to deploy its uniformed police force to stop attacks on the employees it is sworn to protect? Well, you just imagined the Postal Inspectorate.
“Apart from mouthing topic after topic, the Inspectorate is doing very little to stop the mail theft epidemic. Apparently, Postmaster General DeJoy buys what the Inspectorate sells. It’s really unfortunate. If it weren’t for the fact that I’ve been a postal worker for almost 30 years, I would never have believed this level of mismanagement existed.
“Attacks on our nation’s mailboxes are spiraling out of control. Congress should pass HR 3005, the postal police reform bill, as soon as possible.”
(WATCH BELOW: Thieves steal from at least 14 mailboxes in Union County; crimes tied to Charlotte area)