The last of five postal workers who admitted opening packages at a Little Rock mail facility in 2016 in search of marijuana to steal was sentenced Wednesday to six months in federal prison.
Mario J. Burnett, a former mail handler assistant with the U.S. Postal Service, received the prison sentence, the steepest sentence of all the employees, during a hearing before U.S. District Judge Brian Miller.
The other former postal employees, all of whom pleaded guilty to being part of a conspiracy to destroy, detain, delay or open letters, packages or other mail, were sentenced earlier to three years’ probation and 100 hours of community service work, except for one of them, LaQuinta Cloud, who was sentenced March 6 to 40 hours of community service work.
The others were Artez Murrel, who was sentenced on May 16, 2019; Erica Biggers, sentenced Nov. 8, 2019; and Tony Miller Jr., sentenced May 20.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Liza Jane Brown, an investigation began after the Postal Service received a complaint on Aug. 7, 2016, that two packages had been rifled through and their contents were missing. The packages hadn’t been scanned as received at the facility on Lindsey Road but showed they had been mailed from California and Oregon.