Bayonne police arrest 3 on 19 counts of ‘mailbox fishing’

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Three young men, including one juvenile, were arrested in Bayonne on 19 counts of “mailbox fishing,” authorities said.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Ivan Rodriguez, 18, of Yonkers, New York, was charged with 19 counts of theft, burglary, employing a juvenile in the commission of a crime, conspiracy,
burglar tools, 14 counts of credit card theft and possession of 50g or less of marijuana, according to Police Lt. Eric Amato.

Additionally, Christopher Mercado, 21, of New York, New York, was charged with 19 counts of theft, possession of burglar tools, employing a juvenile in the commission of a crime, conspiracy and burglary, officials said.

Finally, a 17-year-old juvenile was also charged with 19 counts of theft, possession of burglar tools, conspiracy, burglary and hindering apprehension, police said.

Yesterday around 3:36 a.m., the Bayonne Police Telecommunicators observed a male in the area of 30th Street and Broadway actively removing mail (mailbox fishing) from a mailbox on the northeast corner of the street, authorities.

The telecommunicators also observed a second individual standing on the corner acting as a lookout.

The two individuals were then observed fleeing eastbound on West 30th Street toward Avenue E and eventually entering a gray minivan, officials said.

Once the individuals entered the van, the van proceeded to travel eastbound on West 30th Street.

Officers were immediately notified of these observations and several officers responded to the area.

On West 30th Street (just east of Broadway), officers located and stopped a gray minivan occupied by three males, police said.

While still observing the events on the city camera, telecommunicators positively identified the van as the
one they have been constantly observing regarding this incident.

As officers approached the van, they determined it to be occupied by Rodriguez, Mercado and a 17-year-old male juvenile, officials said.

Through the windows of the vehicle, the officers were able to view numerous items of mail and US currency strewn about the interior of the van.

During the on-scene investigation, numerous pieces of stolen mail, cash, marijuana and tools used to retrieve mail from mailboxes were recovered from the vehicle, authorities said.

A search incident to arrests of Rodriguez and Mercado led to the recovery of additional pieces of stolen mail, credit cards, and US currency, police said.

Also during the booking process, the juvenile provided false personal identifying information to officers, officials said.

Rodriguez and Mercado were lodged in the Hudson County Jail, while the juvenile was remanded to the Union County Juvenile Detention Center.