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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Virginia

Monday, June 3, 2013

Bassett Man Pleads Guilty To Breaking Into Post Office

Matthew Fitzgerald Admitted To Breaking Into Fiedale Post Office

DANVILLE, VIRGINIA -- An 18-year-old Bassett, Va., man pled guilty this morning to breaking into a Henry County Post Office and causing close to $20,000 worth of damage.

Matthew Fitzgerald, 18, of Bassett, Va., pled guilty this morning in the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia in Danville to one count of willfully committing a depredation against property of the United States, specifically the Fieldale Post Office.

“Mr. Fitzgerald caused major damage to the Fieldale Post Office and for that he has been justly held accountable,” United States Attorney Timothy J. Heaphy said today. “My hope is that restitution will be ordered in this case to cover the cost of the defendant’s destructive behavior.”

According to evidence presented at today’s guilty plea hearing by Assistant United States Attorney Charlene R. Day, Fitzgerald admitted that on April 18, 2013 he broke into the Fieldale Post Office located in Henry County and damaged property inside.

Fitzgerald has admitted to breaking windows, glass, damaging computers, discharging a fire extinguisher, throwing more than 1,000 keys on the floor and breaking florescent light tubes. In all, Fitzgerald caused $19, 309 in damages.

At sentencing, the defendant faces a maximum possible penalty of up to 10 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $250,000.

The investigation of the case was conducted by the United States Postal Inspection Service and the Henry County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Charlene Day is prosecuting the case for the United States.

Updated April 14, 2015