Post Office

Brickbat: Neither Snow Nor Rain Nor Gloom of Night


Yoninah Flickr

The U.S. Postal Service fired carrier Richard Farrell in 2010 after he was caught burning mail he was supposed to deliver. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 120 hours of community service and three years probation. But it seems he may have stolen more mail, much more, than originally thought. Agents raided his Belfair, Washington, home recently and came away with 159 postal tubs filled with mail, containing perhaps 35,000 letters and packages.

NEXT: Police Kill Gunman Holding Firefighters Hostage

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. So burning mail is not considered mail fraud?!

    1. It was only 35,000 pieces – the chances that any of it wasn’t bulk mail are pretty slim.

    2. silly peasant. those rules only apply to you.

      1. I guess Dunphy is right that it’s not just the cops who can get away with breaking the law.


  2. OK wow, I am liking the sound of this.

  3. And I thought it was STEVE SMITH stealing my copies of Hustler.

  4. The jerk didn’t even have the decency to steal my mail before the bills were deposited into my box.

  5. must be an “illegal” immigrant…just buring the mail that american won’t burn themselves.

  6. 18 USC ? 1708 – Theft or receipt of stolen mail matter generally
    Whoever steals, takes, or abstracts, or by fraud or deception obtains, or attempts so to obtain, from or out of any mail, post office, or station thereof, letter box, mail receptacle, or any mail route or other authorized depository for mail matter, or from a letter or mail carrier, any letter, postal card, package, bag, or mail, or abstracts or removes from any such letter, package, bag, or mail, any article or thing contained therein, or secretes, embezzles, or destroys any such letter, postal card, package, bag, or mail, or any article or thing contained therein … Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.

    Somehow 5 years imprisonment and/or a $250,000 fine for each of the thousands counts ? less than 3 years of probation and 3 weeks picking up litter.

    1. You’re not letter carrier, you’re little people.

      1. Plus, according to TFA, he was “genuinely remorseful”.

        To paraphrase Will Munny, “Remorseful’s got nothin’ to do with it.”

        1. “Well, sir, you are a cowardly son of a bitch! You just paper-cut an unarmed mailman!”

          “Well, he should have armed himself if he’s going to decorate his basement with my mail.”

        2. “…sentenced to 175,000 years and a $3.75 billion fine…”

          “We all have it coming kid.”

    2. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not advocating for the maximum penalty either. Although it would be amusing to see this asshat sentenced to 175,000 years and a $3.75 billion fine, I think that would be excessive.

      1. I’d like to see this asshat sentenced to make restitution to everyone he fucked over.

        “Let’s see. I didn’t deliver Mrs. A’s Social Security check, and her son had to take half a day off from work to rectify this. (Writes check to son.) …”

      2. That would be a way of reducing the deficit.

        1. Not really. That’s the amount that the federal government spends every 9 hours.

  7. The alt-text posits the wrong medium for love letters.

  8. Maybe they were my letters to Satan. (My number one wish was always for a cure for my dyslexia.)

  9. But remember the Postal service is a vital part of the State that we absolutely need.

    1. To be fair, it is one of the enumerated powers listed in the pre-amendment Constitution.

  10. Shit….I burn that much mail on a weekly basis….flyers from stores I never go to, offers for a billion dollars worth of credit from companies I have never heard of, ads for timeshares, free hotel stays….my mailbox is a gulf into which a river of shit incessantly flows.

    I sympathize with the guy. I am just surprised anyone noticed the missing mail.

  11. Smoke signals are an alternative form of message conveyance. Did he have a burn permit though?

  12. Perhaps he was compelled to his destructive behavior by a series of menacing messages transmitted through seemingly innocuous electronic displays, preying on his hemophobia which was exacerbated after exposure to experimental pesticides.

    1. The Pax is not a pesticide.

  13. This is the exact plot to an episode of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.