A postal worker was killed while on duty in Landover, Maryland. Tyson Jerome Barnette, age 26, was delivering mail when he was shot and killed by an unknown assailant. Authorities said the shooting happened shortly before 7:30 pm on Saturday, November 23.
A representative with the Prince George’s County Police Department said Barnette was found lying on the ground with multiple gunshot wounds. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Although a suspect has not been identified, authorities hope a $125,000 reward will encourage witnesses to come forward.
As reported by CNN, the reward includes $100,000 from the US Postal Inspection Service and $25,000 from local authorities. The rewards are being offered to anyone providing information that leads to arrest and indictment in Barnette’s death.
The USPS and Prince George’s County Police Department are working together to investigate the crime. Authorities report that there is no clear motive in the shooting. However, the postal worker was killed on someone else’s mail route. Postal Inspector Frank Schissler said Barnette was filling in for a colleague who was absent.
Authorities have very little information, as no witnesses have come forward. Fredric Rolando, president of the National Association of Letter carriers, released a statement on the organization’s behalf:
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the letter carrier and his family during this very difficult time. We are all deeply saddened.”
Rolando said the incident underlines the need for “operational decisions” that address postal workers’ safety. He said postal workers are dedicated and hard-working public servants who are at risk while performing their duties. Rolando said postal officials need to make safety a “priority consideration.”
Some postal workers have complained about working late hours. In an interview with CBS News, letter carriers said they often work until 8:00 pm. They said they feel unsafe working at night and wish the policies would change.
The postal worker was shot and killed on the 1600-block of Reed Street. Anyone with information about Barnette’s death is encouraged to contact Prince George’s County Police.
[Image via Flickr]