Teen vandals blow up mailboxes

St. George police and firemen investigate mailbox vandalism on Paiute Road in the Bloomington area of St. George, Utah, Dec. 28, 2012 | Photo by Chris Caldwell, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – Reports of destroyed mailboxes sent the St. George police department and the fire department to Paiute Drive in the Bloomington area of St. George early Friday morning. Responders on scene said that apparently several teenagers had driven through the area, and left explosive devices in random mailboxes. Although nobody was harmed in the act, there is some notable damage to property.

Mailbox vandalism on Paiute Road in the Bloomington area of St. George, Utah, Dec. 28, 2012 | Photo by Chris Caldwell, St. George News

“I heard the fire truck, I saw the cops circling, so I walked up to the cop to find out what the heck went on,” said Bert Christensen, the owner of one of the destroyed mailboxes. Christensen said that he is a Viet Nam veteran whose service included destruction of explosive ordinances.

“Like the cop said ‘they are just having fun,’” Christensen said, “but that’s not fun. Pretty soon someone gets hurt or killed, and then it’s a whole different ballgame.”

Unfortunately, vandalism of this nature is indiscriminate and occurs at relatively random times, so there is no way to anticipate or prepare for it. It really doesn’t matter in what part of town homeowners live, or what actions they take to prevent destruction to their mailboxes, they will always, by the nature of their placement on the road, be exposed to potential vandalism.

What many people fail to realize is that although mailboxes are private property the U.S. Postal Service is a federal agency, so mailboxes become protected under federal law. According to Title 18, Section 1705 of the U.S. Code, those who destroy a mailbox, or the mail inside it, can be fined and sentenced to up to three years in prison. The intensity of the punishment is a good indicator of how seriously officials take this issue.

Breaking federal law and causing property damage is well past the line of just having fun. Vandals, and potential offenders, need to understand the consequences associated with their actions, and look for other ways to have fun.

St. George police and firemen investigate mailbox vandalism on Paiute Road in the Bloomington area of St. George, Utah, Dec. 28, 2012 | Photo by Chris Caldwell, St. George News

Email: ccaldwell@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2012, all rights reserved.

St. George police and firemen investigate mailbox vandalism on Paiute Road in the Bloomington area of St. George, Utah, Dec. 28, 2012 | Photo by Chris Caldwell, St. George News

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9 Comments

  • Tyler December 28, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    Come on guys, this is funny, no doubt, but jus stick to the fun me and my friends used to have by driving around pushing over full porta potties in construction areas, toilet papering, tagging walls (sidewalk chalk) etc. ahaha!!

    • Annettie Cannavale December 28, 2012 at 6:36 pm

      No, there’s nothing funny about it. Assume for a second someone had been out checking their mail when the explosive went off. If they were gravely injured or even killed those boys would be charged with manslaughter or attempted manslaughter rather than vandalism. Ha ha. I doubt anyone would be laughing then, least of all the citizen.

  • ken December 28, 2012 at 1:21 pm

    Like the cop said ‘they are just having fun,’” Christensen said, “but that’s not fun. I seriously hope this cop was saying this in jest, if not we have issues within the police department.

  • Markus December 28, 2012 at 2:19 pm

    Setting off bombs in a Vietnam veteran’s house is a bad idea. They are lucky he did not shoot them.

  • Alvin December 28, 2012 at 9:09 pm

    Actually the officer is right, the kids were having fun at the time. If we could ask the group of kids if they were having fun at that moment, they would say “heck yes we were having fun!” That’s why they were doing it, it was fun for them at that moment. It isn’t right, but it was fun for them.

  • Hesitant Proxy September 7, 2014 at 1:40 am

    A kid by the name of Tomas Crum, and a few of his friends, did this. He lives on Paiute Road. Kinda obvious when all of the mailboxes around his house were blown up except his.

  • Tomas March 24, 2018 at 10:25 pm

    Esketit

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