A former Camden postal carrier is awaiting sentencing in U.S. district court after pleading guilty to failing to deliver large amounts of mail, some of it medication and some of it burned, according to his plea agreement with the government.
Charles Wetherbee entered his plea last week in federal court in El Dorado to a one-count indictment filed in October of "unlawfully secreting, delaying and detaining mail entrusted to him." Nine parcels of undelivered medication were found in his mail vehicle.
He remained free on a $5,000 signature bond.
His sentencing date will be set after completion of a pre-sentence investigation by the court's probation office.
According to the plea agreement he signed with the government Thursday, Wetherbee could be sentenced to up to five years in prison and fined up to $250,000. Wetherbee also could be ordered to pay restitution for the full loss caused by his conduct.
The government has said in the plea agreement it would not object to Wetherbee receiving credit in calculating the length of his sentence for accepting responsibility for his actions.
The plea agreement contained a summary of the facts to which Wetherbee pleaded guilty.
It said Wetherbee was a rural carrier associate at the Camden post office on June 6 when carrier supervisor Brian McKinney noticed in the dock area mail trays inside Wetherbee's mail truck.
Concerned that the trays may contain undelivered mail, McKinney looked in the window and saw a parcel. He wrote down the parcel's tracking number and ran it through the U.S. Postal Service data base. It showed the parcel had been delivered May 30.
McKinney asked Wetherbee later if he had any mail left in his vehicle and Wetherbee told him he did not. McKinney went with Wetherbee to his vehicle where the parcel he checked earlier that day was still there along with a large amount of undelivered mail.
Two of the undelivered pieces were priority mail parcels and 11 were small parcels, among them the nine medication parcels, the plea agreement said.
Office of Inspector General agents on June 8 went to the mobile home Wetherbee was vacating and saw burn piles in the front and back of the home where bulk business mailings had been burned, the plea agreement said.
A week later, the landlord of the mobile home Wetherbee vacated called the post office in Camden and reported that workers found a large amount of mail inside while cleaning out the home.
The plea agreement said the postal service recovered numerous tubs of undelivered mail.
State Desk on 01/19/2016
Print Headline: Kept, burned mail, ex-Camden postal carrier tells court