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kaylie_kipe
Jul 31, 2004, 06:30 PM
I was very anxious this morning to recieve the iPod my boyfriend was sending me. It had been shipped Wednesday and today, Saturday, I was sure it would be here. All morning I was running in and out of the house to check my mailbox and everytime I was sadly disappointed when it was not there. Around 2:30 pm I went to lunch with my brother, but not before checking the mailbox. Since it was once again not there I left and when I got home I was suprised to find that it had finally shown up. I pulled it out of the mailbox and became slightly worried when I realized that it weighed next to nothing. Next I saw that the mailer had been ripped open and the only thing left inside were two manuals and a warranty slip for the iPod. However, the second generation iPod and the new in-ear headphones I was supposed to recieve were not. So I marched down to the post office to complain. The postal worker that delivered it claimed that the package had not been opened and had weighed more when she delievered it. They said there is nothing they can do about it because the package did not have insurance (the postal woker where it was sent from did not offer it to the shipper). I am very upset and am ready to call the police, seeing as how stealing mail is a federal crime. What do you guys think?

jared_kipe
Jul 31, 2004, 06:30 PM
Yeah, I'm pretty pissed about this too.

jsw
Jul 31, 2004, 06:34 PM
Seems odd that someone other than the postal worker would know to check your mail that day....

Dr. Dastardly
Jul 31, 2004, 07:30 PM
Hell yeah call the police and report it! Its a federal crime for a reason!

Did you guys buy it from Apple or was it mailed from the boyfriend to the you?

themadchemist
Jul 31, 2004, 07:32 PM
It's no solace, but here's the ad that appears under this thread.

In all seriousness, I hope you can sort this out and recover your iPod, or at least get some sort of compensation from the post office.

wowoah
Jul 31, 2004, 07:42 PM
Don't mean to get all CSI right now and I'm probably being naive, but could you dust it for prints or anything? There must be some way of linking the package back to the postal worker, and if can be linked you should immediately file a small claims action, both against the USPS and against the specific postal worker who stole your iPod.

The measuring stick for a civil action is a "preponderance of the evidence", which means that when both sides' evidence are put side by side, the side that is more believable wins. You don't have to prove that the postal worker must have stolen your iPod, but you do have to show that it is the most likely scenario for what happened to it. If you can do that, you might have a lawsuit.

Dr. Dastardly
Jul 31, 2004, 07:51 PM
Don't mean to get all CSI right now and I'm probably being naive, but could you dust it for prints or anything? There must be some way of linking the package back to the postal worker,
It would probably have a ton of prints on it from other outside sources that it would be Inadmissible in court.

virividox
Jul 31, 2004, 08:05 PM
ouch sorry to hear that. good luck, guess next time u know that u should demand insurance or a courier service instead

Abstract
Jul 31, 2004, 08:16 PM
I don't think you need delivery insurance on it to make a theft claim. The insurance is usually available in case the item gets damaged through delivery. If someone at the post office stole it, then go after them. Theft is theft, and is against the law, so whether the package was insured or not, the company is responsible. The company may not have stolen it, but someone who represents the company did steal it, so they should be responsible.

Was the mailbox the box in front of your door, or was it the central mailbox unit that has mail boxes for 20 or so houses? We have 2 mailboxes: one near my front door, and one a few houses down, where we all get our mail. That box is locked, and you need a key to get into it. If it was delivered into such a mailbox, then surely it was the delivery person who stole it.

Was the iPod sent in the iPod box for everyone to see, or was the box sent wrapped in ugly recycled paper? Wrapping it in an ugly paper is the best way for people not to know what's in the box. If you received your iPod with the iPod box visible to everybody, then it was quite risky. :(

Vector
Jul 31, 2004, 08:24 PM
You should call the police, and file a report, but your iPod is likely gone for good. The police will take your statement, but they aren't going to do anything about it. They aren't going to dust for prints or take statements from other people, as it isn't worth their time.

Minor crimes do not get much attention from the police. If their has been a string of local mail theft, then they will look further into it.

I have had several things stolen from my house, and from people breaking into my car, but the one time the police did find someone who did it (there had been a string of robberies) my stuff was already gone. A few weeks ago someone broke into my car and four others on my street. We all filed reports, but i doubt the police did anything because we each only lost a couple of hundred dollars worth of stuff.

It doesn't matter weather it was a federal crime or not. THe police will file their report, and they might find the guy if it has happened more than once but i doubt it.

You should go ahead and file a report though just in case it has been happening to others.

Do you live in an apartment or a house?

Sun Baked
Jul 31, 2004, 08:36 PM
You should call the police, and file a report, but your iPod is likely gone for good. The police will take your statement, but they aren't going to do anything about it. They aren't going to dust for prints or take statements from other people, as it isn't worth their time.Not only the police, since there could be somebody hitting houses, cars, etc. in the area -- but the actual postal inspectors.

Postal theft/fraud is actually up to them and they will do a better job than the local police -- it's a Federal Crime, not really a local crime. ;)

http://www.usps.com/postalinspectors/mailthft.htm

Macmaniac
Jul 31, 2004, 09:49 PM
Sorry about your Pod' use the USPS website and have it investigated to the best of your ability, its probably gone though.... good luck.

jared_kipe
Jul 31, 2004, 10:20 PM
Don't be so sure about it being a minor crime with the police having better things to do. Craig Colorado (where I shipped the sad missing ipod) is a very small town, and this would be a big deal there. I already got my call from the brown-five-O.

kaylie_kipe
Jul 31, 2004, 10:59 PM
I have a regular mailbox, a key is not needed to get inside of it. I am living in a small town right now and I have already had an officer over to ask me questions. Also they have, as Jared said, already called him about it. The people who said I probably will not recover it are probably right. Although this is a small town the bad things that happen in it are not so small. It is probably gone forever, which is really very unfortunate. Thank you all for responding to my post and giving me a chance to vent. It is very much appreciated.

Vector
Aug 1, 2004, 12:52 AM
Don't be so sure about it being a minor crime with the police having better things to do. Craig Colorado (where I shipped the sad missing ipod) is a very small town, and this would be a big deal there. I already got my call from the brown-five-O.

I said that because it says your location is seattle, and the police in my city - much smaller - don't even have the time for minor crimes.

I had thought about saying something about small town crime, as i used to live in one and crime was handled much better, but again i didn't think this situation involved a small town.

Good luck.

jared_kipe
Aug 1, 2004, 01:23 AM
You don't expect the location to be changed every time somebody takes a trip, do you? Anyway, I would be very surprised if Craig's finest came up with the missing ipod.

broken_keyboard
Aug 1, 2004, 03:33 AM
Technically, isn't it the case that your mailbox is the property of the US Mail?

In that case the item was still in their possesion when it was stolen and you should be able to get some sort of compensation. It was stolen from them, not you, and they need to explain.

quagmire
Aug 1, 2004, 10:37 AM
Technically, isn't it the case that your mailbox is the property of the US Mail?

In that case the item was still in their possesion when it was stolen and you should be able to get some sort of compensation. It was stolen from them, not you, and they need to explain.

How is it the property of US mail? You paid for the freaken mailbox. You spend you cash on a mailbox that isn't yours anymore when you dig it into the ground. Does that make sense to you?

Kingsnapped
Aug 1, 2004, 10:53 AM
You also pay $35 (In Wisconsin) for a drivers license with your picture and your name, but it's the property of the DMV. The mailbox thing would be good to look into.

kaylie_kipe
Aug 1, 2004, 12:00 PM
If anyone out there is willing to sell their iPod please talk to me. I would really like to replace the one that was stolen if i can get one at a decent price. Thank you.

broken_keyboard
Aug 1, 2004, 12:02 PM
How is it the property of US mail? You paid for the freaken mailbox. You spend you cash on a mailbox that isn't yours anymore when you dig it into the ground. Does that make sense to you?

I know it doesn't make sense, but it's the law.

From the US Postal Inspection Service web site:
"Mailboxes are considered federal property, and federal law (Title 18, United States Code, Section 1705), makes it a crime to vandalize them (or to injure, deface or destroy any mail deposited in them). Violators can be fined up to $250,000, or imprisoned for up to three years, for each act of vandalism."
http://www.usps.com/postalinspectors/tipvandl.htm

There are urban legends of people painting their mailbox and then sending the bill to the govt, or others sending a rent bill for the few feet of land the mailbox is on.

kaylie_kipe
Aug 1, 2004, 12:17 PM
That's kind of funny about the bill for paint. Tomorrow I am going to go to the town pawn shop and see if anyone has tried to sell it and then tell the owner, if he doesn't already have it, that if someone tries to sell him one if he could please buy it and get their name for me. The chances of it showing up there are very slim but it is worth a try. It very well may be sold somewhere though or given away because the small town I'm in is semi-behind in technology and it is very unlikely they will have a Mac and almost just about as unlikely they will have a firewire port on their computer. But we'll see. I would still like to try to buy one if anyone is willing to sell. Thanks.

Chip NoVaMac
Aug 1, 2004, 12:47 PM
It would probably have a ton of prints on it from other outside sources that it would be Inadmissible in court.

And despite what we see on TV, the CSI team doesn't come out on every case (big or small).

Hopefully the package was insured...

applekid
Aug 1, 2004, 02:51 PM
I just found this post and am amazed someone scooped up the iPod that easily from the mail! Someone had to have known it was an iPod as far as a motive goes, unless this was directly from Apple and in that case it would have the Apple address labels.

Just wondering, did you iPod get one of those special laser engraves? It would create a better description of the iPod.

But the person that stole the iPod only stole the headphones and iPod itself right? Well, that iPod will be semi-useless. No FireWire cable or USB cable, even though those can be bought. I hope the pawn shop will have some information for you.

Small crimes still will be handled well by the police. My teacher reported her checkbook got stolen from her car. The thief broke through the window of her car and snatched it. They were able to later track him down and made him pay for her broken window. Did the police even offer to or bother to dust the box for prints? I might not have been handled by too many people for all we know. And the stuff inside the box shouldn't have been touched by any human hands before boxing it up.

Well, good luck to you. I hope your iPod will show up and that the criminal will pay for the crime.

kaylie_kipe
Aug 1, 2004, 02:57 PM
The iPod was not new and it had no laser engravings on it. No one knew I was getting it except for my boyfriend and I, so no one should have grabbed it for that reason. It was not mailed by apple, since it was not new, but it was mailed by my boyfriend in a mailer envelope. And they didn't just steal the iPod, they stole the iPod, the iPod case, the firewire cable, the charger, the original headphones, and the in-ear headphones. So it is not useless to them if they have a decent computer. It really is unfortunate. But I am calling the postal inspectors tomorrow and seeing if they will look into it.

Chip NoVaMac
Aug 1, 2004, 03:32 PM
I just found this post and am amazed someone scooped up the iPod that easily from the mail! Someone had to have known it was an iPod as far as a motive goes, unless this was directly from Apple and in that case it would have the Apple address labels.

Just wondering, did you iPod get one of those special laser engraves? It would create a better description of the iPod.

But the person that stole the iPod only stole the headphones and iPod itself right? Well, that iPod will be semi-useless. No FireWire cable or USB cable, even though those can be bought. I hope the pawn shop will have some information for you.

Small crimes still will be handled well by the police. My teacher reported her checkbook got stolen from her car. The thief broke through the window of her car and snatched it. They were able to later track him down and made him pay for her broken window. Did the police even offer to or bother to dust the box for prints? I might not have been handled by too many people for all we know. And the stuff inside the box shouldn't have been touched by any human hands before boxing it up.

Well, good luck to you. I hope your iPod will show up and that the criminal will pay for the crime.

First off the cables can be bought in some fashion separately. Also not all areas are served by the same level of police attention. My car was broken into and I was asked by the police whether I wanted a police officer to respond, or would I prefer a call next day to get a police report for my insurance company.

To me it shows that we have given up everything to those that break the law. We will stop those not wearing seat-belts while those that are speeding by at 10 to 20mph over the limit are ignored. IMO it is easier to go after those that are trying to obey the law, than go after those that break the law.

All because we are not willing to pay the taxes needed to provide "real" protection and prosecution. Just look at the posts here about trying to avoid sales taxes.

kaylie_kipe
Aug 1, 2004, 05:11 PM
I agree with you; it is often an easier job for the police if they just don't try to find who did it or anything like that. In Craig (a town of about 10,000) though, they do try to find the people who break into cars and things like that; but a stolen iPod (the police officer wasn't even sure of what it was) is not enough for an investigation. I hope they do try, but there are bigger things for them to worry about...even though stealing mail IS a federal crime.

Abstract
Aug 1, 2004, 06:52 PM
I know it doesn't make sense, but it's the law.

From the US Postal Inspection Service web site:
"Mailboxes are considered federal property, and federal law (Title 18, United States Code, Section 1705), makes it a crime to vandalize them (or to injure, deface or destroy any mail deposited in them). Violators can be fined up to $250,000, or imprisoned for up to three years, for each act of vandalism."
http://www.usps.com/postalinspectors/tipvandl.htm

There are urban legends of people painting their mailbox and then sending the bill to the govt, or others sending a rent bill for the few feet of land the mailbox is on.

Maybe the mailbox is owned by the US postal service, but the content's of the box is your property, not theirs. So no vandalizing the box, but it's okay to damage the content's of the box, as it isn't their property.

But anyway, it doesn't matter. Just make sure the Postie that did this gets what she deserves.

blackfox
Aug 1, 2004, 07:00 PM
You know, not that it would necessarily help in getting you your iPod back, but if you are fairly convinced it was the postman who took it, might I suggest a "sting" operation. We may all be able to help you out in formulating an excellent plan, and see if their greed does them in...I personally would find some satisfaction in that if I was in your shoes... (or even in mine).

Just an idea...

kaylie_kipe
Aug 1, 2004, 07:53 PM
I would consider doing that, because the more I think about it the more I feel it may have been her. So...what do you have in mind?

Abstract
Aug 1, 2004, 08:25 PM
Actually, I would just ask her boss to keep an eye out for a brand new iPod that she may happen to be carrying around, and possibly ask her to see the bill. I know that she doesn't have to do anything to prove her innocence, but I'm sure her even her employers would like to know if they employ a mail thief.

They're in the business of delivering mail. If mail doesn't get to people's doors, it's not good for business.

mr_mac
Aug 1, 2004, 11:43 PM
A Simple suggestion would be to check eBay and such for iPods with matching specs in your area. Check periodically since they may want to wait before selling it. Take a look in all pawn shops in your area. You'd be surprised how sometimes thieves are stupids.

And another thing would be to keep an eye on all iPods you see on the street (You're in a small town right?). If you're bold enough, ask people to see their iPods. If they're a thief, they'll run as hell. If not, they'll gladly show it to you since most iPods owners (i am) are proud of their player and want to show it to the world.

Good luck. I HATE thieves. The law should be more severe for thives.

Hope this helps,

Mrmac

blackfox
Aug 2, 2004, 11:51 AM
I am not familiar enough with the layout of you residence kaylie to formulate any good specific plan...

In general, assuming you have a normal mailbox on the street, a simple surveillance plan (w/ volunteers) would probably work best. Discreet camera surveillance would be preferable for the visual record it would give you, but perhaps unfeaseable for financial or logistical reasons.

Either way, this would involve sending another package of high-tech equipment, although it need only be the box and say a brick or rock inside, depending on the risk you are willing to take.

It is not out of the question to get the police involved, especially in a small town. Personally, I would like a plan that involves exploding paint or something (like the dye-packs that have been used for bank robberies)...not sure how to go about that, however...

Doctor Q
Aug 2, 2004, 12:35 PM
If a mail carrier wanted to steal a package, he/she wouldn't put it in the mailbox and then take it out again; he/she wouldn't deliver it at all. So I don't think the mail carrier is a likely suspect. It sounds to me like a random person grabbed a random package and got lucky.

kaylie_kipe
Aug 2, 2004, 12:46 PM
I went to the pawn shop today and asked if they had gotten any iPods. The owner said he had "never seen anyone with an iPod walk through his doors." So I told him that mine was stolen and asked if one was sold to him if he could call either me or the police so we could see if it was mine. He said no because he can't just assume that someone who sells an iPod to him may have stolen it from me. He said that every month or two they send a report to the police of what has been brought in, but by then it could have been brought in and sold again. Why couldn't he at least call me for me to go look at it and see if it's mine? Everyone who sells something there has to fill out a form with their name and such on it, so it's not like he'd be discriminating against them by getting their name. And if it was mine we could call the police and have them get the person who sold it; but if not than I'd be on my merry way. Anyways, if there has never been an iPod come through his doors wouldn't it be a little odd if two days or so after I tell him mine was stolen a kid comes in there trying to sell one to him? I think so.

Doctor Q
Aug 2, 2004, 01:19 PM
What if you started over with the pawn shop? Have a friend walk in and say "I'm looking for an iPod. Here's my name and number. Call me if you get any." That would make it in the best interests of the store owner to contact your friend if your iPod shows up.

aricher
Aug 2, 2004, 01:35 PM
Check with Apple on the serial # of the iPod shipped to you it should be on file with whatever company you purchased it from. Then, periodically check with Apple to see if the person who stole it is a big enough idiot to register it.

I know it seems like a longshot but the police just caught the guy who stole my wife's purse - the idiot used her credit card at 2 gas stations (on videotape) and then used her cell phone to call Puerto Rico and 2 clocal numbers - the detectives tracked him down in a couple of weeks :D