Mail Thieves Caught

On January 18, 2017, at about 9:30 a.m., Newport Police Officers responded on a report of suspicious circumstances involving subjects in a black Toyota pickup. A witness reported two suspects pulling up to multiple mailboxes, and removing the contents. The witness was able to provide Officers with a license plate number for the vehicle, and a last-know direction of travel.

Newport Police Officers converged on the area in search of the vehicle. A Newport Police Detective, in an unmarked car, located the vehicle in the same area as reported. As Police Officers arrived and attempted to stop the pickup, it sped away and refused to yield. The vehicle drove through Yaquina Bay State Park, down to the Historic Newport Bayfront, and then eastbound on Yaquina Bay Road, with Officers in pursuit.

Near mile post 9.5, on Yaquina Bay Road, a Lincoln County Sheriff’s Deputy deployed spike strips that were effective in deflating the suspect’s tires. The vehicle slowed, and pulled off the roadway down a small embankment and into a ditch.

Officers with Newport Police, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, Oregon State Police, and Toledo Police Department worked together to safely take the subjects into custody. The two suspects were identified as Kim Robert Woods, age 49 of Waldport (driver), and Charles Karpins, age 26 of Halsey, Oregon.

Both arrestees were lodged at the Lincoln County Jail. Woods was charged with Eluding a Police Officer, Recklessly Endangering, Reckless Driving, and Mail Theft. His bail amount has been set at $130,000. Karpins was charged with Mail Theft. His bail amount was set at $50,000. Additional charges are expected to be filed on both subjects as the investigation continues.

Newport Police Officers executed a search warrant on the vehicle. It has been determined that Woods and Karpins had been stealing mail and packages over the past several days. Officers have identified nearly thirty victims. A US Postal Inspector is assisting with the investigation.

If you believe you have not received expected mail in the last week, please contact Detective Mitch France at 541-574-3367. If you have recently located mail in your box that does not belong to you, please contact the non-emergency dispatch number at 541-265-4231.
The Newport Police Tip Line is available at 541-574-5455, or Text-a-Tip at 541-270-1856.

Information and photos provided by Newport Police