It’s a federal case: Brookhaven police working with post office theft case

Published 11:00 am Thursday, June 23, 2022

Brookhaven police officers are working local angles on a federal case.

Over the past two months, a few mail boxes in the lobby of the U.S. Post Office on Cherokee Street have been tampered with. Mail has been stolen from at least one of the boxes. Theft of mail and crimes committed against the Postal Service are federal crimes and come under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Postal Inspector.

Local authorities are working in conjunction with federal authorities on their own investigation.

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“We’ve got a couple of suspects,” Brookhaven Police Chief Kenneth Collins said. “We’ve been in contact with the Postal Service and state and federal governments.”

In May, someone reported their post office box had been tampered with, and that a box of checks had been taken. When someone cashed one of those checks at BankPlus in Brookhaven, a bank employee caught the transaction and reported it to police. When the suspect returned to attempt to cash another check on May 9, officers were called and he was arrested, according to Det. Capt. Clint Earls.

Police charged Jatran Kewon Sanders, 39, of Brookhaven, with uttering forgery. But Sanders is not the only suspect.

“More complaints have come in since then of boxes being tampered with,” Earls said.

The detective captain said he has had conversations with the U.S. Postal Inspector’s office about increased security options that are under consideration. For now, Earls suggests box renters check their boxes more frequently, and earlier in the day.

“If possible, check your boxes at a reasonable daytime hour, rather than late at night,” he said. “Check your boxes often and report any box tampering.”

Some misdemeanor theft of lawn and garden equipment was also reported from the Post Office on Brookhaven Street. Chief Collins said these crimes should urge business owners to invest in surveillance systems and better lighting, if they have not done so already.

“These will help us out tremendously. It’s worth the money if we catch one person,” he said. “We need their help. We’re trying to do with limited manpower the best we can.”

Anyone with information on the case is asked to call BPD at 601-833-2424.

“Please, please, report any and all suspicious activity,” Earls said.