Updated:NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. —
A New Smyrna Beach mailman is out of jail after being arrested for allegedly tricking unsuspecting residents on his route into handing over cash.
Deputies said Randell Holley told the latest victim his son was the woman's newspaper carrier, and he needed money because his car was broken down.
Investigators said Holley has been caught doing the same thing, at least twice before.
Neighbors said they trusted Holley, who they knew, and they believe that's why the latest victim was allegedly targeted and tricked.
Along a dirt road, residents like Tiffany Bowen said they never expected Holley to do what he is accused of doing.
"I'm really, really shocked, I've never had any problems with him before," Bowen said.
Holley was arrested over the weekend and charged with fraud after deputies said he schemed Bowen's 67-year-old neighbor into handing over $47.
That woman told authorities her mailman showed up at her house just before 5 a.m. and told her that his son delivered her newspaper and the two had broken down.
He said he needed the money for newspaper fees, and to help get the car towed," Bowen said.
The neighbor said it was scary to think a government employee could take advantage of someone like that.
After giving him the money, the victim called the newspaper and the sheriff's office -- and realized she'd been duped.
Authorities then told her Holley had been investigated twice before in 2011 for a similar scheme but avoided prosecution after he eventually paid back his victims.
WFTV went by Holley's home Monday, but no one was there.
Residents said since Holley's arrest Saturday, they've seen a new postal carrier delivering their mail, and they hope it stays that way.
"I hope he did lose his job and things like this don't keep occurring," Bowen said.
The U.S. Postal Service did not respond to a request for comment.