Residents in Sundance and Three Rings Ranch had their community mail boxes broken into on Feb. 9 and Feb. 12.
The first thefts were in both communities on Feb. 9; the second theft was just in Sundance on Feb. 12.
Seven pedestals at five locations were affected in Sundance; four pedestals at two locations in Three Rings Ranch were hit.
Beaumont Police Commander Sean Thuilliez said the mail box break-ins are unusual for the city.
“It seems to be the first time it’s happened out here,” said Thuilliez. “This has been an issue in many other jurisdictions and it’s now caught up to Beaumont.”
Thuilliez said that Indio and the Coachella Valley have been having problems with mail theft.
Janice Reed, a resident of Three Rings Ranch, spoke before the Beaumont City Council Tuesday night about the mail theft. Three Rings Ranch doesn’t have a homeowners association like Sundance and the residents are trying to determine how to best solve the problem.
Reed said the mail to slot, which is the entry to all of the mailboxes, was damaged during the thefts.
She said they realize it’s their responsibility to replace the mail boxes, which can cost $1,750 for 16 resident mailboxes, said Thuilliez. It is not the U.S. Postal Service’s responsibility, he said.
Reed said they have been going to the post office to get their mail and it has been confusing for the residents.
“It’s a great hardship,” Reed said.
She said the homeowners are willing to pay for a new cluster of mailboxes.
Sundance residents have been asked to join a Facebook page to get the word out to everyone in their community.
The Facebook posting said that the thieves are trying to get the income tax return checks and cash them. Residents were advised to call their banks and let them know not to cash those checks without proper identification.
Beaumont police were reported to be doubling their security patrols and residents were advised to turn on their outside porch and garage lights.
Thuilliez said an information flyer has been posted on the city’s Web site, www.ci.beaumont.ca.us