Gone are the days when the mailman only worked until 5 p.m. Some people are still having trouble getting used to it.
"I'm thinking, that can't be the mail. He must be going to his home or something, I don't know what's going on," said postal customer Ty Stocker.
He's describing the first time he saw late mail delivery in his neighborhood, which is now becoming routine. Letter carriers at the 30336 office in Atlanta's Ben Hill neighborhood are frequently burning the candle at both ends.
Now they're working with the knowledge that one of their co-workers was just robbed at gunpoint while delivering after hours.
A police source tells CBS46 four men attacked the letter carrier on Fulton County's Pompey Drive Wednesday, stole his personal belongings and two crates of mail out of the truck.
Neighbors said they're surprised any crime at all happened out here, let alone one of this magnitude.
"It's usually very peaceful, and we usually know who's coming up and down the street at all times, so it was shocking," said Cindira Sadler.
The new driver replacing the robbery victim on this route made a point of hitting the street earlier in the day Thursday.
We're also learning from a source that another letter carrier at the same post office had a gun drawn on her two months ago. That time, it was a homeowner who mistook her for a burglar because he wasn't expecting mail so late.
Employees told CBS46 they'd be fired if they spoke on the record, but some said off-camera that the biggest issue contributing to late deliveries is understaffing.
In an official response, the USPS spokesperson said there's nothing inherently dangerous about delivering mail in the dark. They also would not acknowledge late mail deliveries as a recurring and widespread problem, which runs contrary to what people in neighborhoods throughout Metro Atlanta tell us they are experiencing.
Officials at the post office headquarters in Washington, D.C. want people to call this number: 800-ASK-USPS , to report late deliveries in their neighborhood.
They say it will help them keep track of and document what's going on in Atlanta.
Make sure you have some time set aside for the call, because when we tried the number, it took 52 minutes of waiting on hold to reach someone. Say the option "carrier" in the voice prompts to be connected to the department for late mail complaints.
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