Thanks to a tipster’s help, police netted on Friday morning two alleged mailbox fishers in Rego Park.
Officers from the 112th Precinct responded to a 911 call about suspicious activity at the corner of 63rd Drive and Wetherole Street at about 1 a.m. on May 4.
Upon arriving at the location, police said, they were met by an eyewitness who claimed to have seen two men using a contraption to steal envelopes out of a U.S. Postal Service mailbox at the corner of 63rd Drive and Booth Street, a block away.
After receiving a detailed description of the suspects, law enforcement sources noted, the officers began canvassing the surrounding area. Moments later, at the corner of 63rd Drive and Alderton Street, they came across two men who fit the description walking through the area.
Police said the officers stopped and exited from their vehicle and went to stop the men. One of the suspects was detained at the scene as the other attempted to flee on foot. An officer caught up to him following a brief foot pursuit, authorities said.
Cops identified both suspects as Brooklyn residents Ron Rosario, 25, and Carlos Salazar, 23. In arresting them, police recovered the makeshift fishing device, which turned out to be a small, weighted plastic bottle covered in adhesive with a shoelace attached to it.
Rosario and Salazar were charged with grand larceny, criminal trespassing and possession of burglar’s tools, sources said.
Deputy Inspector Robert Ramos, commander of the 112th Precinct, took to Twitter to congratulate the arresting officers for their work.
— NYPD 112th Precinct (@NYPD112Pct) May 4, 2018
Police and the U.S. Postal Service have been working for many months to battle mailbox fishing around the borough. Individuals use makeshift devices to obtain envelopes full of checks or personal information out of standard USPS blue mailboxes on the street. The USPS, at the request of local lawmakers, has begun installing security devices on the mailboxes to prevent further thefts.