Daily Court Reporter - News Postal employee sentenced to six months in prison for stealing gift cards
Postal employee sentenced to six months in prison for stealing gift cards
A U.S. Postal employee assigned to deliver mail in Willowick and Eastlake was sentenced to six months in prison for stealing gift cards.
Sonte E. Gibbons, 25, of Cleveland, previously pleaded guilty to theft of mail by a postal employee.
Gibbons was assigned to the Willowick Post Office beginning in September 2016, where he delivered mail in Eastlake and Willowick.
On April 13, 2017, Gibbons had a letter he was supposed to deliver to a location on East 331 Street that contained a $10 Wal-Mart gift card. Gibbons redeemed the gift card three days later while wearing his postal uniform, according to court documents.
Gibbons was arrested after the U.S. Postal Service’s Office of Inspector General received complaints about mail on Gibbons’ route had not been delivered. Agents prepared 10 first-class mail pieces that contained a greeting card and a gift card or cash. Agents mailed the letters. Seven of the 10 were not delivered, according to court documents.
“As the holidays approach, this case is a good reminder that people should be cautious about sending cash or gift cards in the mail,” U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman said. “The vast majority of postal employees are dedicated workers, but this case reminds us that there are always Grinches among us.”
U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General Special Agent in Charge Kenneth Cleevely, Eastern Area Field Office said: “Postal employees are paid to deliver the mail, not steal it. This prison sentence should send a message to all postal employees and the public that special agents with the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General aggressively investigate all allegations of employee mail theft, and will hold those who choose to steal accountable. Gibbons decided to forfeit his pay, benefits, retirement, and freedom for what amounted to a few dollars. To report postal employee misconduct, contact USPS OIG special agents at www.uspsoig.gov or 888-USPS-OIG.”
This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Elliot Morrison following an investigation by the U.S. Postal Service’s Office of Inspector General.
About the US Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Ohio
The Department of Justice is the nation's litigator, serving but one client, the United States. The United States Attorneys serve as the Department's principal litigators under the direction of the Attorney General. There are 93 United States Attorneys stationed in judicial districts throughout the United States and its territories. United States Attorneys are appointed by, and serve at the discretion of the President of the United States, with advice and consent of the United States Senate. Each United States Attorney is the Chief Federal Law Enforcement Officer of the United States within his or her particular jurisdiction.
United States Attorneys conduct most of the trial work in which the United States is a party. The United States Attorneys have three statutory responsibilities under Title 28, Section 507 of the United States Code:
the prosecution of criminal cases brought by the Federal Government;
the prosecution and defense of civil cases in which the United States is a party; and
the collection of debt owed to the Federal Government.
Although the caseload varies among districts, each has every category of cases and handles a mixture of simple and complex litigation. Each United States Attorney exercises wide discretion in the use of his or her resources to further the priorities of the local jurisdictions and needs of their communities.
Date Published: December 18, 2018