Following a rash of mail thefts in the area, police “on heightened alert” arrested three men from out of state who were found to be in possession of dozens of pieces of stolen mail in Darien.
An officer on patrol near the Darien Post Office on Corbin Drive at approximately 3 a.m. stopped a black Toyota Corolla with New Jersey license plates driving slowly in front of the building. As the car approached the marked police cruiser, the driver proceeded to suddenly stop and put its blinker on.
According to police, “given the large number of recent mail thefts, the suspicious operation of the vehicle and the time of night, the officer conducted an investigatory motor vehicle stop.”
The officer made contact with the driver, Patterson, N.J. resident Jeramy Valdez, 20, with passengers Carlos Artiles, 27, of Patterson, N.J. and Redding, Penn. resident Yimmy Javier, 19. The officer said that there were several unopened articles of mail with the return address of “Stamford Superior Court” in plain sight. He noted that there were additional items of mail hastily covered with clothes in the back seat.
Police said that the three said they had been in Norwalk and were going home to New Jersey, despite the fact that Corbin Drive is not a waypoint between the two locations. The officer prompted them to move the clothes off the mail, and the vehicle was searched.
In total, investigators seized 61 pieces of mail from inside the vehicle. Police also found a crowbar and hammer inside the car. They later discovered that the Heights Road Post office mailbox had been forcibly entered.
The three suspects were taken into custody. Each was charged with possession of burglary tools, larceny, criminal mischief, criminal trover and conspiracy to commit larceny. They are currently being held in lieu of $50,000 bond. No return court dates have been announced for the three.
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