Almanac

News - March 12, 2014

Menlo police arrest woman with piles of stolen mail

Police have arrested a San Jose woman in connection with thefts of mail from residential mailboxes, including a mailbox in West Menlo Park, the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office reported.

Menlo Park police on Feb. 18 arrested and booked into county jail Sandra Cristina Couto on charges that include suspicion of possession of stolen property, deputies said.

Deputies had responded to a call from a resident of the 2000 block of Monterey Avenue, who reported seeing a suspicious vehicle, a Buick, parked in front of his house at around 7:50 p.m. on Feb. 18. The Buick made a U-turn and left the scene, the resident told deputies, revealing a pile of opened, discarded mail next to where the car's driver's side door had been, deputies said.

Deputies examined the pile of mail and determined that it was addressed to residences "throughout the area."

While collecting the mail from the ground, deputies learned of an arrest by Menlo Park police following a traffic stop of a white Buick. The arresting officer reported "a large amount of mail" inside the Buick, deputies said.

Ms. Couto had an outstanding no-bail warrant for her arrest on drug-related charges in Santa Clara County, deputies said. Given the large amount of mail involved, police notified the U.S. Postal Inspectors Office and the San Jose Mail Theft Task Force, deputies said.

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