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CHARLOTTE, N.C. – A federal grand jury in Charlotte returned a criminal indictment charging Tressa Nichole Baucom, 30, of Charlotte, and Jennings Peter Keziah, also known as Christian Thomas Carpenter, 35, of Stanley, N.C., with mail theft and wire fraud, for stealing thousands of pieces of mail in North Carolina and South Carolina, announced Dena J. King, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina.
Tommy D. Coke, Inspector in Charge of the Atlanta Division of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, which oversees Charlotte, joins U.S. Attorney King in making today’s announcement.
According to allegations contained in the indictment, from October to December 2021, Baucom and Keziah executed a mail theft scheme that targeted residential mailboxes in Charlotte and Gastonia, N.C., and York County, S.C. Over the course of the scheme, Baucom and Keziah allegedly stole more than 3,700 pieces of mail, including credit cards, checks, gift cards, driver’s licenses, bank statements and a passport. The indictment alleges that Baucom and Keziah used the stolen credit cards for personal expenditures, including to make purchases at Walmart, Academy Sports & Outdoors, Quick Trip, and Best Buy. The indictment further alleges that Baucom and Keziah also possessed a stolen United States Postal Service key.
Baucom and Keziah are each charged with one count of conspiracy to possess stolen mail and three counts of possession of stolen mail, which carry a maximum sentence of five years in prison per count, and one count of wire fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
The charges against Baucom and Keziah are allegations. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt in a court of law.
In making today’s announcement U.S. Attorney King commended the USPIS for its investigation of the case.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Cassye Cole of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Charlotte is prosecuting the case.