A man was arrested Friday and charged with drug possession after he was caught allegedly stealing mail out of residents' mailboxes in Homestead.
Law enforcement officers had received reports of stolen mail in a neighborhood in the Mandarin Lakes community around Southwest 143rd Court and Southwest 276th Street.
38-year-old Benjamin Brown was detained and patted down by an officer after he was spotted going from mailbox to mailbox.
In addition to 83 pieces of mail that did not belong to him, police found seven pieces of crack rock, two grams of cocaine powder, and a concealed knife on his body.
"I respect officers," Brown told NBC 6 shortly after getting arrested. "I made some bad choices in my life and I've gotta live with it." He was taken into custody about nine blocks from his own home.
Several neighbors said they'd spotted Brown sorting through their mailbox or caught him on surveillance camera.
"Although the U.S. Mail remains one of the safest means of transmitting information or products, it also remains attractive to thieves," the U.S. Post Office warns.
"Mail theft can be minimized by taking preventative actions, such as not leaving incoming mail in your mailbox at your door for long periods of time."
It was also revealed that Brown had already been on probation for robbery with a deadly weapon and possession of a controlled substance. He was transported to Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center and is being held on $1,000 bond.