Matthew D. Krueger, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, announced today that on April 18, 2019, David E. Polnitz, Jr., was sentenced in federal court to 36 months in prison for illegally possessing a firearm and forcibly assaulting, impeding, intimidating or interfering with a United States Postal Service (“USPS”) Letter Carrier. A jury had previously found Polnitz guilty of these charges.
The facts at trial showed that on June 27, 2017, a USPS Letter Carrier was attempting to deliver mail when Polnitz’s unrestrained pit bull charged the Letter Carrier. Fearing for his safety, the Letter Carrier followed procedure and sprayed the pit bull with USPS-issued dog spray. Polnitz, 39, upon being notified by his spouse of the incident, ultimately pointed a Taurus, model PT738, semi-automatic .380 pistol at the Letter Carrier. The Letter Carrier identified Polnitz, among other ways, by his distinctive “Pepsi blue” contact lenses.
While sentencing Polnitz, United States District Court Judge Pamela Pepper emphasized that this was one of the more serious cases of its kind that she had seen. She also stressed that the victim in this case was merely doing his job as a letter carrier and should never have been threatened with a gun.
“This sentence sends the message that federal prison awaits anyone who threatens a federal employee,” said United States Attorney Krueger. “We commend the law enforcement agencies for their excellent work in bringing justice to this matter.”
“The sentencing in this case should send a strong message that Postal Service employees should not be threatened or intimidated while performing their official duties, and should be off limits to acts of violence,” said Inspector in Charge Craig Goldberg, of the Chicago Division of the U.S. Postal Inspection. “The safety of Postal Service employees is our top priority and violence against our employees will never be tolerated.”
The case was investigated by the Milwaukee Police Department and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Zachary Corey and Benjamin Taibleson.