OCEANSIDE, Calif. — A U.S. Postal Service mail carrier from Oceanside’s Brooks Street Station pleaded guilty in federal court to stealing over $2,000 from customers, announced San Diego Attorney Randy Grossman’s office.
Breanna Wares, 39, admitted to stealing gift cards, cash and jewelry from around 20 residents along her route, according to her plea agreement.
The attorney’s office said most of the addresses on her route were located on the U.S. Marine Corp Base Camp Pendleton and many of the victims were active members of the military.
Agents from the Office of Inspector General launched an investigation after several complaints of missing mail were reported along Wares’ route. According to their findings, she unlawfully redeemed over 30 Target gift cards, totaling $1,400, that had been placed in the mail.
During a search of her vehicle, officials said they found more than 40 gift cards valued at more than $1,300, along with sheets of stamps, jewelry, foreign currency and First Class Mail greeting card envelopes.
“The defendant stole from those who entrusted their confidence in the delivery system,” Grossman said. “The U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to working with the U.S. Postal Service to protect the integrity of the system and bring justice to the victims of these crimes.”
Wares has agreed to pay restitution to her mail theft victims as part of her plea agreement. She is also prohibited from working in the mail or delivery industry, said the attorney’s office.
The U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General, Western Pacific Area Field Office, Executive Special Agent-in-Charge Glenn San Jose said, “For over two centuries, the Postal Service has honored its fundamental commitment to protect the sanctity of the U.S. Mail. Today’s guilty plea demonstrates that theft of U.S. Mail, committed by a Postal Service employee, will not be tolerated.”