Reading Police Charge Two Men in Mailbox ‘Fishing’ Incident

Reading, MA — Police Chief David Clark reports that the Reading Police Department charged two men after they allegedly fished through a public mailbox.

OSCAR NADAL, AGE 18, OF BOSTON has been charged with:

  • Breaking Into a Depository
  • Receiving Stolen Property Under $1,200
  • Attempt to Commit a Crime
  • Common Law, Conspiracy

FRANCIS POLANCO, AGE 20, OF READING was charged with:

  • Receiving Stolen Property under $1,200
  • Break Into a Depository
  • Attempt to Commit a Crime (Larceny)
  • Common Law, Conspiracy
  • Receiving Stolen Property Over $1,200

At approximately 2:36 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 3, police were dispatched to the area of 352 Main St. after receiving a report that two men were fishing around in a post office box.

Upon arrival, Officers learned the two suspects had walked away from the mailbox and subsequently left the area in a white SUV heading southbound on Main Street. A short time later, Reading Police located the vehicle parked near 274 Main St. near businesses that were closed for the night, as well as a mail dropbox.

Officers initiated an on-scene investigation, during which the witness who had reported the fishing incident further up Main Street arrived on scene and indicated that the two men in the parked SUV, later identified as NADAL and POLANCO, were the ones she saw fishing in a dropbox outside her apartment.

After identifying the men, NADAL was taken into custody on an unrelated warrant out of Taunton District Court while officers continued the investigation. An officer observed several pieces of paperwork and mail inside the vehicle while speaking with POLANCO and, after a subsequent search of the vehicle, identified multiple bills, letters and checks addressed to neither NADAL nor POLANCO. Among the items found in the vehicle were several pieces of mail with return addresses in Easton, including an open envelope containing an invoice for $5,700 from one business to another, which Reading and Easton Police connected to a fraudulent check that was cashed in that amount in late October.

Officers also located an item that they believed to be the item used to fish inside the mailbox.

“Mailbox ‘fishing’ has been an issue in ours and other communities lately, and I’m glad that these individuals were caught due to an alert resident and the work of quick-acting officers,” Chief Clark said.

Other incidents of mailbox fishing remain under investigation.

NADAL was held without bail on the existing warrant for his arrest and was transported to Woburn District Court. POLANCO was issued a summons.

These are allegations. All suspects are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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