A federal judge last week agreed with federal prosecutors to sentence a Roslindale mail carrier to two years of probation and 80 hours of community service for the 9,700 pieces of mail, addressed to 1,095 Roslindale residents, that she stuffed in her SUV rather than delivering over an 18-month period.
Lots of magazines and junk mail:
Megan Hawes, 30, of Roslindale, faced up to 5 years in federal prison for theft of mail matter by a Postal Service employee for all the mail found in her SUV in a Weymouth tow lot.
Hawes rifled through at least some of the letters, looking for cash or checks.
In a sentencing recommendation filed in US District Court, though, prosecutors for the US Attorney's office said probation, community service and restitution would be a just punishment, one that recognizes the seriousness of what she did but also the fact she has a substance-abuse problem and no prior criminal record.
This thirty-year old defendant knew right from wrong when she stole and rifled through thousands of pieces of mail. She abused her position of trust. She is an educated woman who was employed by the post office for almost 18 months before resigning her position as a result of the instant offense. She is a high school graduate who has completed one semester of college. ... She lied to USPS on the date she was confronted with the theft by initially denied stealing any mail and also told agents that she had no substance abuse issues. However, one day later, she resigned from the USPS and in her resignation letter, indicated she does have a substance abuse issue. Soon thereafter, she began to reside at a sober house which she remains at. In her interview with U.S. Probation for the [pre-sentencing recommendation], the defendant related that she has a history of chronic substance abuse and first began abusing substances at age 15. The government is cognizant of the information contained in the PSR concerning this thirty year old defendant's history and has factored that into consideration when fashioning its recommended sentence. However, the defendant's crime was not isolated to one day or one incident but rather were repeatedly committed over approximately eighteen months.
In light of the facts presented in this case, the government recommends a period of two years of probation, continued substance abuse treatment as determined by U.S. Probation, 80 hours of community service, a $100 mandatory special assessment, and restitution as determined by the Court. This defendant stole from the citizens of the community she was hired to deliver mail to. As such, community service should be made part of the sentence. The government asserts that this sentence comports with the factors outlined in [federal law], including the nature and circumstances of these offense, the need for the sentenced imposed must reflect the seriousness of the offense and promote respect for the law, the characteristics of the defendant, and both specific and general deterrence.
US District Court Judge Denise Casper ordered restitution of $235 and a special assessment of $100, in addition to the probation and community service.