Man indicted for stealing mail truck

I-Team

** Previously aired coverage: Local mail truck stolen, found with a surprise **

CLEVELAND (WJW) — Cuyahoga County prosecutors have now indicted a man for stealing a mail truck last month in Bratenahl.

Richard Turpin has been indicted on a charge of grand theft.

A Cuyahoga County Grand Jury considered the case. The US Postal Service is not handling the case since no mail ended up missing, and there was no damage to the truck.

The FOX 8 I-Team recently revealed police video as Bratenahl officers investigated.

A woman called Bratenahl police saying, “He just stole the mail truck!”

She watched your mail going off to the wrong zip code as a man hopped in the truck and drove away.

Two women told police the man driving off had first badgered them to use a phone.

The witness who’d called 9-1-1 said, “Then, he saw the mail truck, and I’m like, maybe he’s asking that guy for a ride. And, he didn’t. He got in the truck and drove all the way down there.”

Bratenahl police video also shows an officer asking the mail carrier, “Are you alright?” 

The carrier answered, “Yes.” And, he shook his head in disgust.

 A police report shows the mail carrier said he parked his truck at the end of a long driveway. He said he’d seen a bunch of vehicles in the driveway from some kind of contractor work crews. So, he left his truck at the end of the driveway and walked with mail up to a house.

The carrier told police, “Got the mail. I got the mail. Walked up. Started coming back. He was taking off.”

You might wonder what we wondered, and police wondered. An officer asked, “Were the keys in the truck?”

The carrier answered, “My fault. Left the keys in the ignition.”

Still, the mail did not disappear for good. Euclid police stopped the truck just miles away at East 185 and the Shoreway.

When Bratenahl Police got there, they met the suspect.

An officer asked, “Why’d you take the mail truck?”

The suspect answered, “A U-Haul.”

The officer responded, “I don’t think that’s a U-Haul.”

But, inside, police found more than mail in the truck. They found a big screen TV.

The mail carrier determined no mail was missing, but he had no explanation for how the TV was added.

Court records show other investigations involving Richard Turpin are still pending with possible county charges coming in other cases.

He goes to county court on the mail truck case to begin defending himself July 7.

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