Skip to main content

3 Bay Area mail carrier robberies in 1 week leaves mail of thousands at risk

A man in a US Postal Service uniform walks on a wet sidewalk
The United States Postal Inspection Service is investigating three separate robberies on postal carriers that happened around the Bay Area from July 24 to July 28. | Source: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Thousands of Bay Area residents’ mail is at risk after three postal workers were robbed in separate incidents last week in San Francisco, the East Bay and South Bay, according to the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

The first incident happened around 3:30 p.m. on July 24 on Morrow Drive near San Pablo Dam Road in San Pablo, inspectors said. The suspect in the incident brandished pepper spray before stealing the postal worker’s keys.

The second incident happened on Tilson Avenue in Cupertino on Thursday at around 2:07 p.m., when a robber indicated they were armed and stole postal keys and equipment.

The third robbery happened at 12:35 p.m. Friday on 24th Avenue when robbers approached from California Street in San Francisco’s Richmond neighborhood and snatched postal keys before fleeing along Lake Street.

No mail carriers were harmed in any of the incidents.

Why Are Postal Workers Being Robbed?

Postal keys used to open mailboxes along carriers’ routes are regularly targeted by thieves hunting mail and other items that could be sold or used to steal identities, according to the postal service.

Similar robberies have happened across San Francisco in recent months, including in the Outer Sunset in February; the Mission District in March, possibly putting at least 70,000 residents at risk; the Western Addition in May; and Noe Valley in July when a suspect ran up from the 22nd Street Jungle Steps and demanded postal keys.

The U.S. Postal Inspection Service says mail carrier robberies are rising across the Bay Area. The service could not provide The Standard with any 2022 or 2023 data to support such claims. Nationwide, robbery cases recorded by the postal inspection service spiked from 94 in 2019 to 253 in 2021, according to the service’s own data. 

The postal inspection service offers a reward of up to $50,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone assaulting or robbing a postal worker. If you think a carrier is in danger, the service asks that you call 911 and then call postal inspectors at 877-876-2455. 

Signs a postal worker may be in danger include vehicles following mail trucks and suspects lingering near postal boxes or tampering with them. Signs you may have been affected by mail theft include damaged or broken locks on mailboxes and missing or delayed expected deliveries.

Filed Under