A FedEx driver made at least half a dozen trips to discard hundreds of packages in a wooded ravine in Blount County, Alabama, according to local authorities investigating the matter.
Roughly 450 people were victims of theft, some of them residents of the county and some not, the Blount County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday. "This will not be an easy or fast case to close," Sheriff Mark Moon stated.
The driver has been identified and questioned, Moon said in an update on Monday.
More than 400 packages of various shapes and sizes were found Wednesday, November 24, in a ditch off a wooded trail near the small town of Hayden, Moon initially announced on his office's Facebook page.
Deputies were sent to guard the scene until FedEx workers could arrive to pick up the packages, with the shipping giant sending multiple trucks and drivers from across the South to load up the packages, Moon said.
Photos posted on the sheriff office's Facebook page show the packages strewn about the forest. The site where the packages were found is about 30 miles north of Birmingham, Alabama.
It wasn't clear why the packages were in the ravine, the sheriff said, but he hoped to have some answers soon.
Memphis, Tennessee-based FedEx told the local CBS affiliate that the driver was no longer employed by the shipping giant.
"The security of our customers' shipments is a top priority and we are committed to treating our customers' packages with the utmost care. In addition to cooperating with law enforcement, we have reviewed this situation and can confirm that the individual involved is no longer providing service on behalf of FedEx Ground.
"We regret the inconvenience this situation has caused and appreciate our customers' understanding throughout the package recovery process. Where possible, recovered packages are being delivered to the intended recipients. In the event of a damaged shipment, we will make every effort to work with the affected shippers to reach a resolution. As always, customers with questions about their shipments can track their packages by visiting http://fedex.com."
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