✉ The letter carrier was assaulted on the street

✉ Assaults on carriers nationwide were up 22% in 2022

✉ Assaulting a carrier comes with a sentence of up to 10 years for a first offense

VINELAND – A $50,000 reward has been posted by the U.S. Postal Service for the information leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever assaulted a letter carrier in broad daylight.

The carrier was on the route on Washington Avenue around 11:30 p.m. July 3 when they were attacked and robbed, according to the Postal Service. Vineland police are investigating with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

More assaults on mail carriers

Assaults on carriers have been increasing with the number of robberies up 78% in 2022, which the letter carrier's union said is “unacceptable.”

“The National Association of Letter Carriers is outraged and angered by the assaults, armed robberies and even murders that America’s letter carriers increasingly face as they deliver the mail. These attacks are completely unacceptable,” Paul Barner, the union’s executive vice president, said.

Theives are often after the "arrow key," a universal key that opens the collection boxes and cluster boxes where mail is stored by carriers awaiting delivery. Thieves can then get their hands on checks, cash and credit cards that have been left for pickup.

"The biggest variable enticing these criminals to steal are customers depositing mail into blue collection boxes after the last collection of the day or during Sundays and federal holidays," the Postal Service said.

U.S. Postal Service delivery truck
U.S. Postal Service delivery truck (Dan Alexander, Townsquare Media)

The Postal Service said it’s adapting and implementing new measures to address the robberies, which are taking a toll on letter carriers tasked with delivering about 162. One million pieces of first-class mail each day.

Among the measures being taken are dual authentication and hardening the collection boxes to prevent tampering.

Theft of mail carries a penalty of up to five years in prison, and possession, concealment or disposal of property carries a sentence of up to 10 years in prison. Assault carries a sentence of up to 10 years for a first offense, and up to 25 years for a subsequent offense, he said.

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