Mailbox Vandalism Rant


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glockten
September 21, 2003, 06:07 PM
I'm steaming.

Just returned from my mom's house, where I discovered someone had fired a shotgun through her mailbox. I couldn't find the hull but did find the wad; it appears to be from a 12 gauge birdshot load.

Her mailbox has been vandalized before, but with blunt instruments. So last year, my brother and I installed a heavy-gauge steel shroud around the box. This time some oxygen thief fired into the front of the mailbox, which is unprotected by the shroud. A new jacket my mom had ordered was inside at the time. It was ruined, of course.

Mom hadn't reported it, so I called the sheriff's department. The deputy said it was probably teenagers wanting to see what a shotgun would do; I agree.

I know no THR members fall into the above category. But just in case some brain-dead punk ever peruses this thread and wonders what a shotgun will do to someone else's property, let me offer an alternative suggestion.

Chamber a round, flick off the safety, put the muzzle in your mouth, and depress the trigger.

If you're still curious after that, you can shoot up my mailbox.

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Mark Tyson
September 21, 2003, 06:20 PM
Sorry to hear about it. Consider one of those heavy duty steel boxes with a padlock - that will protect letters and the like, especially important documents like credit card bills, etc. If you're ordering merchandise, you should use a service that actually puts the stuff in your hands and makes you sign for it. Or you could get a PO box or a rented mail box. It wouldn't ordinarily be worth the expense, but you say this has happened more than once.

natedog
September 21, 2003, 06:22 PM
I remember a long thread here or on TFL about mailbox vandalism, and it had plenty of funny solutions.

Old Fuff
September 21, 2003, 06:29 PM
They probably won't catch the jerk unless he's seen doing in another mail box. But if he does get caught he's committed a federal crime, and you can see that he gets nailed for it. I hope you get the chance.

boing
September 21, 2003, 06:39 PM
I think video surveillance equipment isn't too expensive these days...?

Jason Demond
September 21, 2003, 06:49 PM
For some reason, this sound personal to me. Did your Mother really anger anyone lately? Does she have protection?

Jeeper
September 21, 2003, 06:52 PM
Speaking of mailbox vandelism!

My roomate in college parents lived kindof out in the suburbs on a large track of land. Their mailbox kept getting rundown my some punks who would just plow over it with their truck. This happened about 4 or five times and then we decided to fix it. His father owned a backhoe so we dug us a nice deep hole and stuck a really thick pipe about 8 feet into the ground. We then covered the pipe with wood to make it look like any other mailbox post. About a month later my buddies dad was leaving for work and found one of the neighbors kids(the one we all suspected of doing it anyway) truck wrapped around the pole. Funny enough; no more mailboxes were ever run down!

Zundfolge
September 21, 2003, 06:52 PM
I think video surveillance equipment isn't too expensive these days...?
http://www.protectiondepot.com/motioncam.asp


Remember, tampering with mail boxes is a Federal crime. Once you snap pics of the perps, call the FBI, not the local Barney Fife.

AK103K
September 21, 2003, 07:32 PM
Mailbox baseball is the local sport around here. Those who make a blatant effort to "re enforce" them seem to get hit worse. Baseball is still better than beer, shotguns with buck shot and road signs. Buck shot travels a little farther than a mailbox. Then again, there are still quarter sticks around. Ah, life in the country! :)

glockten
September 21, 2003, 07:48 PM
I've twice run off vandals who attempted to take out my mailbox, but this incident with my mom's is the first I've encountered involving a firearm.

I doubt the idiots realize that by using a gun as their tool, they're putting themselves in mortal danger.

zahc
September 21, 2003, 08:24 PM
All of our immediate family have stout steel plate MB's courtesy of yours truly. Piece of well casing on steel pipe works quite well.

4v50 Gary
September 21, 2003, 10:24 PM
Jerks are giving us gun owners a bad name. :(

Snowdog
September 21, 2003, 10:48 PM
http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid80/pab9584fdd56eda75320a098a07b499ef/fb064167.jpg

glockten
September 21, 2003, 11:02 PM
Snowdog, that photo is hysterical!:D

Rembrandt
September 21, 2003, 11:15 PM
...well they defintely committed a couple of Federal offenses, destruction of US mail being one.

(Around 1958) we had a couple of kids that threw an M80 into an old ladies mailbox and ran like the wind....buldged the mailbox and split the seams, Old gal saw the kids running away and called the regional FBI office to turn them in...an agent came out and interviewed the boys, scared the crap out of both of them...don't remember if any charges were brought, but both ended up entering the military shorty afterward....a common practice that judges used back then to correct offenders.

P95Carry
September 21, 2003, 11:22 PM
Generally lucky round here .... no major mail box probs but oh man ..... would that ever pi$$ me off ........ bigtime.

I think If I found a young and spotty ''12G tester'' tryin this on ... I'd maybe have to return the favor (just wishful thinkin!) .... by seein how his tires stood up to firearms discharge (you name the cal !). :evil: :D

JohnKSa
September 21, 2003, 11:54 PM
Solutions for mailbox problems.

For mailboxes being run over.

Buy some heavy cast iron 4" pipe. Bury it next to the mailbox with about 6' under the ground and maybe 2' sticking out. Pour pipe full of cement. Buy some nice little bushes and plant them around the base of your mailbox. Don't leave too much pipe sticking out of the ground.

You will want video surveillance so you have something amusing to watch when you get frustrated about the world.

For mailbox baseball. Buy the largest mailbox you can find. Buy the smallest mailbox you can find. Center the small mailbox in the large mailbox and pour the space in between full of cement. Mount it on a normal pole so nothing looks suspicious. Again, video surveillance would be fun.

For people shooting mailboxes. Wait out on the front porch with a semi-auto centerfire rifle. When they shoot, shoot back--a lot. If anyone questions you just say that you were walking out the door to go hunting/to the shooting range/whatever and someone opened fire on you. Check your local laws, of course. I don't think they'd even question you in TX...

P95Carry
September 22, 2003, 12:04 AM
John - I do declare ... i think you share my same vindictive mindset!!!:D

Bowlcut
September 22, 2003, 12:07 AM
well what concerns me is....that to shoot from the end...wouldnt they be basicly shooting toward the house??? like toward where your mother was sleeping or something.

the blaten destuction of PERSONAL property is lower than low. and stupid....some people need to quit wasteing our air

glockten
September 22, 2003, 12:28 AM
what concerns me is....that to shoot from the end...wouldnt they be basicly shooting toward the house?

Exactly.

If I see someone at my mailbox with a shotgun, 90 feet from my front door, pointing it in my direction, guess what my response will be.

WheelMan
September 22, 2003, 12:31 AM
It might very well be one of those urban (or suburban in this case) legends, but I remember a story about some kids driving around knocking off mailboxes with an aluminum bat They targeted a mailbox that had been fortified against such an attack by it's owner. Well the combination of the forward velocity of their vehicle plus the swing of the bat into a heavy steel mailbox that just wasn't going to move caused the tip of the bat to bounce so mightily off the mailbox that it struck the batman in the head and killed him. I'm usually not particularly heartless, but if you loose your life in such a stupid and pointless act I have no sympathy.

JohnKSa
September 22, 2003, 12:43 AM
Well the combination of the forward velocity of their vehicle plus the swing of the bat into a heavy steel mailbox that just wasn't going to move caused the tip of the bat to bounce so mightily off the mailbox that it struck the batman in the head and killed him.
I'd hate to have anything like that happen in front of my house...

































...and not get it on video! ;)

P95 Carry,
I prefer to think of myself as a creative problem solver rather than as vindictive.

duckfoot
September 22, 2003, 03:34 AM
Wow and I thought I was bad. But just for your sake you might want to check out if there are any stupid laws that say "for the safety of all motorists all mail boxes must not be able to with stand the force of X amount of impact force and still must be set X amount of feet from the road to be serviced by the USPS" Some towns have laws like this because of reactions like yours in their minds have hurt people that ran off the road and hit a reinforced mail box by mistake and wound up wrap around that pole you put there.

With that said I have a put my cast iron mail box on a reinforced swing arm set on a big 6' x 12 cast pipe filled with super mix and metal scrap set 8 feet in the ground 8 feet from the road. My mail flag is a red painted 1" x 12" rebar set to the base of the box because some sumbitch kept ripping the sheet metal ones I made off, after installing my new mail box.

Still every once in a great while I head a thud in the middle of the night of some nut ball trying to give me a run for my money. The most I have to do is spray paint the marks off of the useless attempts to undo my work.

Hope it lasts, cause that mail box was one mother to put together.

swingset
September 22, 2003, 05:21 AM
I've had 5 destroyed on me. Between the imbred local teenagers and the snow plow drivers I can't keep a good one. My 2nd box was a 6" iron pipe filled with concrete, and the top got blown off so hard that I couldn't salvage the pipe and it ended up backfiring on me (lots of work to replace).

Nowadays I use the cheapest junk galv. pipe and $5 walmart plastic mailbox they sell. It sucks, but I've got a new one back up in 10 minutes.

Okiecruffler
September 22, 2003, 06:00 AM
We lost 3 mailboxes in one month to a bunch of knuckle draggers who would drive by and nail the box with a bat. Mom told dad to quit replacing them, this was in the days before direct deposit, so all important mail, i.e. Dad's government check and VA check, went to a P.O. Box in town. But dad put up one last mail box. Bought the biggest mailbox they had at Sears, filled it up with cement. Took me and my brother to lift the danged thing up on the pole. A few mornings later we went out to wait for the school bus and found our new mailbox laying on the ground, right next to an aluminium baseball bat:D . Funny thing was, a local rival school's starting wide reciever missed the last 3 games of the season, and they missed the playoffs for the first time in 7 years, due to a fractured wrist. Coinky-Dink? Maybe:scrutiny:

cracked butt
September 22, 2003, 09:57 AM
For mailbox baseball. Buy the largest mailbox you can find. Buy the smallest mailbox you can find. Center the small mailbox in the large mailbox and pour the space in between full of cement. Mount it on a normal pole so nothing looks suspicious. Again, video surveillance would be fun.

Someone in my state did just that a couple of years ago because their mailbox kept getting destroyed. Shortly after reinforcing it, a couple of punks drove up in a beat up pickup truck, put a homemade exposive in the mailbox, and found that their truck stalled. The driver could not get the truck started in time, and suprise, he and his passenger took the brunt of the explosion, killing both.

The only unfortunate thing to come out of this was that the homeowner was sued by the families of the two punks that died. I can't remember if there was any money awarded or who won the lawsuit, but nevertheless, the homeowner spent alot of money defending himself in court :banghead:

einnor1040
September 22, 2003, 10:27 AM
The only unfortunate thing to come out of this was that the homeowner was sued by the families of the two punks that died. I can't remember if there was any money awarded or who won the lawsuit, but nevertheless, the homeowner spent alot of money defending himself in court

Sued for what? It's sad they were killed but they initiated it by being a dumbass. It wasn't the homeowners fault. I hope that case went to judge that had some sense and thru it out of court about 2 seconds after it hit his desk.


Sorry to here that Glockten. That sucks.

Carlos Cabeza
September 22, 2003, 11:19 AM
It really floors me to think that this is the only form of entertainment some kids can come up with .............................:rolleyes: LOSERS !

XLMiguel
September 22, 2003, 12:32 PM
Umm, I believe it's the Postal Inspectors one needs to call re: Mailbox vandalism, not the FBI. A quick call to you local Postmaster should get the ball rolling. Good luck, have fun, get even:evil:

bogie
September 22, 2003, 12:47 PM
I was a bad person when I was a kid... We used to take those "pull the string and it goes bang" fire crackers, and tie 'em to our mailbox, and then sit up in a tree above it when the mailman set it off...

LawDog
September 22, 2003, 02:28 PM
The guys-n-gals you want are the United States Postal Inspection Service. (http://www.usps.com/postalinspectors/welcome2.htm)

They're liable to take the destruction of US mail kind of personal-like.

The ones I've dealt with have been genuinely nice people.

Heh.

Waa-aay out north of town we had a big old house that a couple from Dallas used as a vacation/occasional weekend house. This house was up on the cap-rock on a slight rise above a canyon - which meant that even with the lights off an S.O. cruiser could be spotted about a week before getting to the house.

After much cogitating, the High Sheriff decided that we would put the house under video surveillance.

Gawd. Do you know how much stuff is required to tape/record/store video information? And none of it waterproof.

After further pondering, the Sheriff went to Lowe's and bought a bloody huge hideously green poly-something-or-other mailbox.

Voila! The video camera, processor, VCR and wiring fit into the mailbox with a gnat's whisker of extra room -- and the whole thing was waterproof!

We pulled the old mail box, put in the new, improved Mailbox, Mk1.

That very evening, one bored young honyock and three of his buddies spread 4 digits worth of the County's money across the landscape with the aid of a Ford F-150 and an aluminum baseball bat. :banghead::cuss:

LawDog

Phyphor
September 22, 2003, 02:54 PM
Ok, I KNOW that's not supposed to be funny, but I can't help but laugh at it....

mrtgbnkr
September 22, 2003, 03:37 PM
A neighbor growing up got tired of some punks running over his mailbox about every 2 weeks...so he dug a nice deep hole and sunk half of a railroad tie in the ground, half above ground, and mounted his new mailbox. Two nights later, the crash could be heard all over the neighborhood...that mailbox is still there!

rtpzwms
September 23, 2010, 02:49 PM
I went through this a few years back with kids playing mailbox baseball. I found out a few things. Call the postmaster and report it is important but will most likely see no real tangible results. In my case I was the last mailbox in the gang of mailboxes. This was a rural mail delivery by definition in their regulations.

You can MOVE your mailbox as long as:
1 you do not change the delivery order (I was the last mailbox)
2 you do not change the side of street for delivery (I lived on the same side as the gang box location)
3 you install your new mailbox at proper height and distance from the curb
4 USPS did not supply the mailbox in question

They had a 800 # to call the USPS to ask questions. I called and documented the phone call asking permission to move the mail box. I received a verbal OK to the move the box to the front of my home.

I constructed the Mailbox form he!! to stop mailbox baseball. Concrete 2 feet into the ground then 16" square block with re-bar on the outside of the block then covered the whole thing in brick. I inserted a locking mailbox in it and capped the whole thing with 2 pieces of rosa stone and a light. It was the nicest looking mailbox in the small town.

Then came the mail carrier who told me that she would NEVER deliver to my new mailbox. Another call to the local postmaster and a conversation about my phone call with USPS and the notes that I had on the phone call and that afternoon... NEVER happened. My postal carrier was none to happy but she got over it with time.

End result I had a great mail box and it was in a great location. The kids continued to play mailbox baseball but not with my mail box.

Sam1911
September 23, 2010, 02:57 PM
Seven years ago, when this thread was active, THR was very new and certain norms had not yet been established, tested, and inscribed in stone.

Over the many intervening years, THR.org's mission has narrowed to be firmly focused on guns, shooting, self-defense, and RKBA. Mailboxes are off-topic.

If you enjoyed reading about "Mailbox Vandalism Rant" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!