News

Former Letter Carrier Convicted of Destroying Mail

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 25, 2011

Greenbelt, Maryland - A federal jury convicted Warren Christopher Bradford, age 41, of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, late yesterday of destroying mail he was entrusted to deliver as a Postal Service letter carrier.

The conviction was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Joanne Yarbrough of the U.S. Postal Service, Office of Inspector General; and Interim Chief Mark Magaw of the Prince George’s County Police Department.

According to Joanne Yarbrough, Special Agent in Charge of the Postal Service’s Office of Inspector General, “The overwhelming majority of postal employees work very conscientiously to move the nation’s mail – approximately 171 billion pieces of mail each year – to its proper destination. It is a responsibility they take very seriously. Unfortunately, there are a few postal employees, very few, who abuse the public trust placed in them, but successful prosecutions are a significant victory against offenders. I appreciate the work and partnership of the U.S. Attorney’s Office with these investigations. The American public should remain confident that the majority of the employees of the Postal Service are hard-working and continue to maintain the trust and integrity of the Postal Service.”

According to evidence presented during the three day trial, Bradford was a 15-year employee of the U.S. Postal Service assigned as a letter carrier to the Capitol Heights Post Office in Prince George’s County, Maryland. The evidence showed that beginning in June 2009, customers living along Bradford’s postal route began reporting that they were not receiving mail for days at a time. On September 21, 2009, a citizen called 911 after witnessing a Postal Service employee unloading several trays full of mail from a Postal Service vehicle and discarding them at a secluded location in Capitol Heights. The Prince George’s County Police Officer who responded to the call discovered the three trays of undelivered mail the caller had seen the carrier unload as well as a large amount of burned mail spread across the wooded lot. That officer notified a local Post Office, whose supervisory employees responded to the scene along with agents of the U.S. Postal Service’s Office of Inspector General. There, postal officials recovered mail from Bradford’s route bearing postmarks dating back to June 2009. Postal officials located Bradford at approximately 3:00 p.m. when he returned to the burn site in his postal truck, which still carried nearly all of his route’s mail for that day.

Bradford faces a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison. U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams, Jr., has scheduled sentencing for May 25, 2011 at 9 a.m.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended U.S. Postal Service, Office of Inspector General and the Prince George’s County Police Department for their work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant United States Attorney Adam K. Ake, who is prosecuting the case.

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