Arizona Democrats Advocate Mail-In Voting as Mail Crimes Soar Nationwide

In an attempt to justify universal mail-in voting, Arizona Democrats Thursday downplayed the ongoing issue with mail theft and crimes against mail carriers that are soaring nationwide.

“Note, these ‘drop boxes’ do not have 24-hour video surveillance and the world continues to turn,” Arizona’s House Democrats said on Twitter.

The group was arguing against HB 2238, proposed in the state legislature, that would ban ballot drop boxes. Democrats describe the bill as one in favor of “voter suppression.”

As The Star News has chronicled, though, the United States Postal Service (USPS) and its ubiquitous blue mailboxes – used for absentee voting – have been under siege by criminals for some time.

Ohio has been a hotbed of such crime.

In fact, Cleveland USPS offices are taping their blue boxes shut in an effort to thwart criminals from breaking into them. Mail carriers in Columbus have fallen victim to a string of robberies, with criminals robbing mail carriers for their keys to those blue boxes.

The state of Ohio is currently conducting an audit to find out just how susceptible its blue boxes are to crime, and to find a way to make them less susceptible to crime.

But the problem is nationwide and continues to grow.

The Star recently spoke with Frank Albergo, the head of the Postal Police Officers Association (PPOA) about mail crime across the country. He says the problem is an “epidemic,” and that just when they were needed the most, Postal Police Officers (PPOs) were pulled off the job.

“The Postal Inspection Service data revealed that mail theft reports soared by 600 percent over three years, from about 25,000 in 2017 to roughly 177,000 through August of 2020,” Albergo said, noting that “PPOs are a highly trained uniformed police force specializing in mail theft prevention and protection of postal employees.”

“PPOs, for years, were conducting mail theft prevention patrols by using data to target specific zip codes where mail theft was most prevalent. Unsurprisingly, it was working,” he said. “But then on August 25, 2020 the Postal Service reinterpreted enabling statute in order to decrease postal police law enforcement jurisdiction, thereby ending all postal police patrolling activities.”

The Arizona House Democrats could not be reached for comment.

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Pete D’Abrosca is a reporter at the Arizona Sun Times and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Mailbox” by Arizona House Democrats. 



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