Howard County Police are advising residents to take precautions when placing checks in mailboxes after a string of mail thefts were reported in the county.
Police have received seven reports of checks being stolen from their outgoing mail in Laurel and Clarksville.
"In each case, a suspect looks for mailboxes with red flags up, indicating there is outgoing mail in the box to be picked up," stated police. "The suspect then steals checks from the outgoing mail, alters the payee's information and then goes to a branch of the victim's bank to cash the checks."
Due to the recent thefts, police are encouraging residents to drop their checks at a local post office or inside a residential blue post office box.
Police asked that residents who believe their mail may have been stolen contact them at 410-313-3700 or the U.S. Postal Service Inspection Service at 202-636-1514.