September 3, 2014

Medina
Mostly clear
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Police arrest 5 suspects in theft of mail

MEDINA — Five people suspected in the theft of mail this weekend from a collection box behind the Medina Post Office were in custody Thursday night.

Kourtney Mains, 20, Kyle Mains, 18, and Anthony George, 18, all of 944-2 Dawn Court, and Shawn Shea, 18, of 946 Andrews Road, are in the Medina County Jail on charges of receiving stolen property, a fifth-degree felony, police said. One juvenile suspect is in the custody of the Medina County Juvenile Detention Center.

Police said they are searching for a sixth suspect.

“We know what they did, how they did it and are sweeping the city looking for the last suspect,” Police Chief Patrick Berarducci said. “If you had mail stolen, take precautions to protect against identity theft. It will take a while to determine the scope of the crime committed.”

Two bongs sit outside a duplex at 944-2 Dawn Court on Thursday night where Medina police arrested three people suspected in the weekend theft of mail from a collection box behind the Medina Post Office, 303 N. Court St. (Liz Sheaffer / Gazette)

Two bongs sit outside a duplex at 944-2 Dawn Court on Thursday night where Medina police arrested three people suspected in the weekend theft of mail from a collection box behind the Medina Post Office, 303 N. Court St. (Liz Sheaffer / Gazette)

Acting on a warrant signed that night by Common Pleas Judge Christopher J. Collier, Medina police, in conjunction with the U.S. Postal Service, searched the Dawn Court duplex, where items reportedly stolen from the mailbox were found as well as drug paraphernalia, police said.

As police continued to search the residence, two bongs removed by authorities sat outside the front steps of the duplex.

Mail trays and additional evidence believed stolen were found at a second location, police said.

Detective Scott Thomas said a break in the case came after a tip naming two suspects was called into Southern Ohio Crime Stoppers — (800) 222-TIPS. The suspects also reportedly talked to their friends, he said.

Other breaks in the case came from people who had deposited mail this weekend and called authorities. The stolen mail included Target and Chipotle gift cards, he said, some of which were used locally.

“They walked right into the (surveillance) cameras,” Thomas said.

On Saturday, Medina police reported that between 5 p.m. Friday and 7 a.m. Saturday, a drive-up collection box behind the post office at 303 N. Court St. was broken into and mail stolen.

“A lot of people had mail stolen,” he said, and calls and tips to authorities were a “prime example” of the importance of their input.

Victims of the crime are asked to contact U.S. Postal Inspector James Bogden at (216) 443-4019.

Contact Liz Sheaffer at (330) 721-4060 or lsheaffer@medina-gazette.com.