BRUNSWICK, GA: A U.S. Postal Service supervisor who admitted stealing marijuana from a confiscated package has been sentenced to federal prison.

Howard Kerns, 53, of Dearing, Ga., was sentenced to two months in prison followed by two years of supervised release after pleading guilty to Theft of Mail Matter by a Postal Employee, a felony crime, said David H. Estes, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. Kerns also was terminated from the U.S. Postal Service.

As described in court documents and testimony, Kerns, who had previously worked in the post office in Evans, Ga., was working in the Brunswick, Ga., post office when a delivery arrived in August 2020 with a package suspected of containing marijuana. Postal workers put the package on a shelf in the postmaster’s office to await examination by a postal inspector from the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

Postal management later discovered the package had been opened and resealed, with the contents removed and reported to the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General for further investigation. After questioning, Kerns admitted stealing the package’s contents.

The case was investigated by the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General, and prosecuted for the United States by U.S. Attorney Joshua S. Bearden.

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