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Missing mail mystery in Douglas County solved

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CASTLE ROCK, Colo. -- The missing mail mystery in Douglas County might have been solved, but it could be some time before the mail is returned.

For the past several months, residents in Douglas County have been wondering why some of their mail had gone missing.

“We don’t know what was taken, that’s just the problem,” said Herb Rose of Castle Rock.

Holiday gifts, cards, bills. Where did it all go?

“It’s a little frustrating when you order something and it doesn’t show up or it’s Christmastime and the kids don’t get the presents,” Rose said.

The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office arrested Michael McDaniel and Danielle McDaniel of Castle Rock for allegedly stealing from mailboxes throughout the county.

“The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office got a lead that led them out here to Castle Rock storage where they were able to get a warrant and search the storage facility,” Douglas County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Lauren Lekander said.

The arrests were made in a joint effort by the Jefferson and Douglas County sheriff’s offices as well as the Castle Rock Police Department and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

“It is a lot of pieces of mail that’s going to have to be processed and that is going to take some time,” Lekander said.

The sheriff’s office said there is no timetable for the return of the mail, but residents hope they’ve seen the last of the thefts.

“It’s become a big event for the neighborhood,” Rose said. “We tend to look out for each other.”

The U.S. Postal Inspection Service offers tips for residents:

  • Use the letter slots inside your Post Office for your mail, or hand it to a letter carrier.
  • Pick up your mail promptly after delivery. Don't leave it in your mailbox overnight. If you're expecting checks, credit cards, or other negotiable items, ask a trusted friend or neighbor to pick up your mail.
  • If you don't receive a check or other valuable mail you're expecting, contact the issuing agency immediately.
  • If you change your address, immediately notify your Post Office and anyone with whom you do business via the mail.
  • Don't send cash in the mail.
  • Tell your Post Office when you'll be out of town, so they can hold your mail until you return.
  • Report all suspected mail theft to the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.
  • Consider starting a neighborhood watch program. By exchanging work and vacation schedules with trusted friends and neighbors, you can watch each other's mailboxes (as well as homes).

If you see a mail thief at work, or if you believe your mail was stolen, call police immediately, then call postal inspectors at 877-876-2455 (press 3).