District Man Sentenced to 18 Months in Prison For Stealing Package Off Doorstep, Violating Court Order
Defendant Has Nine Prior Theft-Related Convictions
WASHINGTON – A man with a history of theft convictions was sentenced today to 18 months in prison for stealing a package last summer from a residence in the DuPont Circle area of Northwest Washington and then violating a court order to stay out of the neighborhood pending trial, U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips announced.
Wayne Bridgeforth, 60, of Washington, D.C., pled guilty in October 2016, in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, to charges of second-degree theft, with a felony enhancement, and felony contempt. He was sentenced by the Honorable Neal E. Kravitz, who also ordered that Bridgeforth get drug and mental health treatment. Following his prison term, Bridgeforth will be placed on three years of supervised release, during which time he must stay away from the area where his crimes took place.
Bridgeforth has a history of stealing mail since at least 1984 and has nine previous convictions for theft-related offenses.
According to the government’s evidence, on July 25, 2016, at about 4:45 p.m., a man who was walking his dog saw an individual, later identified as Bridgeforth, take a package off of the stoop of a residence in the 1500 block of Q Street NW. The man followed Bridgeforth and told him to drop the package or he would call the police. Bridgeforth dropped the package and ran. The package contained a camera, which was not damaged in the incident.
Officers with the Metropolitan Police Department later determined that Bridgeforth had been seen in the neighborhood for the past seven months. On Aug. 10, 2016, officers observed Bridegeforth in the 1600 block of Church Street NW and placed him under arrest. Bridgeforth admitted to stealing packages and also wrote a letter of apology to the victim of the July 25 theft. Following his arrest, Bridgeforth was released from custody pending further court proceedings, with an order to stay away from the neighborhood including DuPont Circle. He violated that order and was once again in the area on Sept. 7, 2016, leading to the contempt charge.
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Phillips commended the work of those who investigated the case from the Metropolitan Police Department. He also expressed appreciation for the efforts of those who handled the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Assistant U.S. Attorney Alysa Kociuruba, who prosecuted the matter.