SAN JOSE, Calif. - Residents of Cambrian Park and other neighborhoods in San Jose are upset that they no longer can count on finding their mail inside locked cluster mailboxes at the curb outside their apartment buildings.
MORE: USPS encourages signups for new tool to fight mail theft
Vandals have busted open the access doors where letter carriers deposit the mail into individual boxes, and the locks on individual boxes have also been vandalized.
Residents on Bradford Way say they either have to go to the post office to pick up their mail or lie in wait, if they're lucky, to catch the letter carrier as he or she comes down the street.
"This is the first time I've seen such a bad situation where people get desperate just to get their mail," Bradford Way resident Christopher DalPorto said.
The U.S. Postal Service Inspection Service says California is a hot spot of clutter mailbox vandalism. The Postal Service says its goal is to repair vandalized boxes within 48 hours if it has the parts, but the key is having the customer report the break-in.
"I think some of these have been broken into more than once like this one here. I think that one had been fixed actually. So, I was just lucky it wasn't done again, I think," postal customer Chris said.
Piyoush Dave, owner of the UPS Store nearest to Bradford Way says his business renting private mail boxes has gone up about 10 percent in the past six months, which coincides with the reports of vandalism. "I would say about 10 percent of my business in the last, I would say, six months," Dave said.