Former USPS mail carrier pleads guilty to stealing thousands of greeting cards filled with gift cards, money

NOW: Former USPS mail carrier pleads guilty to stealing thousands of greeting cards filled with gift cards, money

WAUWATOSA, Wis. (CBS 58) -- A former Wauwatosa USPS mail carrier has pleaded guilty to stealing thousands of greeting cards, many of them filled with gift cards, checks, and money.

Ebony Smith accepted a plea deal this week in federal court.

Heather Kyte says she had more than a dozen greeting cards stolen from her home in Washington Highlands in Wauwatosa, many of them with money inside. She says a lot of her family lives out of state, and they send cards to her family around the holidays. She says the cards started disappearing about a year and a half ago, but she’s not alone.

Jennifer Christianson said she had an engagement card and birth announcement stolen.

Court documents show Smith admitted to stealing up to 100 dollars a week from greeting cards to, “…pay bills and take care of her four children.”

Inside Smith’s car investigators found 6,625 First Class greeting card envelopes and 540 personal checks.

They were all taken between March 2017 and January 2018 from people living in two Wauwatosa zip codes: 53213 and 53226.

Smith is now facing a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison.

USPS provided CBS 58 this statement:

“The vast majority of U.S. Postal Service personnel are dedicated, hard-working public servants dedicated to moving mail to its proper destination who would never consider engaging in any form of criminal behavior. This type of alleged behavior within the Postal Service is not tolerated and when a postal employee betrays that trust of the American people, the special agents in the U.S. Postal Service, Office of Inspector General vigorously investigate these matters as we did in this instance and work with other law enforcement agencies and local, state and federal prosecutors to hold accountable those employees who violate that public trust. Anyone can contact the USPS OIG Hotline at 1-888-USPS-OIG (1-888-877-7644) or file a complaint online at to report alleged fraud, waste of funds or resources, mail theft and other postal crimes committed by postal employees or contractors

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