HAWTHORNE — As the Post Office is warning people to watch out for identity thieves stealing their envelopes from blue mailboxes, officials have charged a letter carrier for doing just that.

A postal carrier was arrested on her route Thursday and charged with stealing mail.

Hawthorne police told ABC 7 Eyewitness News that Deane Decosta, 30, of North Brunswick, was taking mail she was supposed to be delivering and using information from the stolen mail to commit acts of identity theft.

Decosta was charged with 15 counts including credit card theft, fraudulent use of a credit card, identity theft/impersonation, receiving stolen property, possession of under 50 grams of marijuana and theft by deception.

"This type of alleged behavior within the Postal Service is not tolerated," the Postal Service said in a statement to the news outlet.

Police told the Daily Voice of Saddle Brook and Elmwood Park that Decosta was released and is scheduled to be in court on April 28.

The Newark Division of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service has been investigating thefts from mailboxes in Middlesex, Union, Passaic, Bergen, Essex and Hudson counties. Thieves take gift cards, checks and cash that have been mailed, according to Postal Inspector Greg Kliemisch.

Postal officials say they’re working on security upgrades to mailboxes, but they would not specify what that may or may not entail.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM