Cypress cluster mailbox hit 12 times in a month - and it's not the only one

Craig Conner says he's had his mail stolen a dozen times in the past four weeks. 

"Had a credit card stolen... Someone tried to use it and the credit card company stopped them right away. They sent me a new one and then it happened again. They stole it again," he said. 

His cluster mailbox off Garden Vista Lane is one of several being hit by thieves in the Fairfield area of Cypress.

"It was happening about twice a week, but lately about 3 times a week this past week," he said. 

The cluster mailboxes open with a "master" key, called Arrow and Modified Arrow Lock (MAL) Keys, according to a United States Postal  Inspection  Service (USPIS) press release. 

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According to the release, mail carriers are often robbed of these keys that are then used to steal mail.

It reads, "In FY22, 412 USPS letter carriers were robbed on the job. With 305 incidents reported in the first half of FY23, these incidents are increasingly more prevalent."

The issue got so bad that, here in Houston, postal workers protested for more protection. 

"I was putting mail in the mailbox and the car just drove up - and attacked me for a key - for a key," said Ulysses Wells at the protest. 

In the USPS press release is says they plan to swap out the old locks for new electric ones. 

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"To make Arrow Keys less valuable for criminals, the Postal Service will replace 49,000 antiquated arrow locks with electronic locks. New locks have been installed in select cities with installation to occur in additional major metropolitan areas soon." 

Fox26 reached out to USPS about the incidents in Cypress, they responded with an email that reads

"The USPS has received mail theft reports from the Cypress, TX area.  However, I cannot confirm the specific addresses in these reports.  Postal inspectors are reviewing these reports and each one is taken seriously."

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We also asked if there are any of those new electric locks in our region and if not, when we'll get some. They responded:

"Over 6,500 arrow locks have been replaced with electronic locks, with more to come. The location of these replacements will not be released due to security concerns. Any further questions regarding deployment of locks should be directed to the Postal Service."

They suggest getting your mail as quickly as possible when it's delivered and reporting any crimes by calling their Hotline  877-876-2455. 

Connor says it's just a waiting game at this point for the new locks to come around or these thieves to get caught. 

"I'm hopeful they'll catch the person and this will all end," he said.

The USPS also gave the following insight on mail theft and response: