A New Jersey mail carrier was arrested and charged for dumping mail, including election ballots, the US Attorney’s office in the District of New Jersey announced Wednesday.
Nicholas Beauchene, 26, was charged with one count of mail obstruction and one count of delay, secretion, or detention of mail.
The US Attorney’s Office said the mail is now back in the mail stream and will be delivered.
A U.S. Postal Service (USPS) mail carrier from Hudson County was arrested today for discarding mail, including 99 general election ballots sent from the County Board of Elections and intended to be delivered to West Orange residents, from his assigned routes in Orange and West Orange, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.
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Nicholas Beauchene, 26, of Kearny, New Jersey, is charged by complaint with one count of delay, secretion, or detention of mail and one count of obstruction of mail. He is scheduled to appear this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Cathy L. Waldor in Newark federal court.
According to documents filed in the case, Beauchene dumped 1,875 pieces of mail, including election ballots sent to West Orange residents:
Approximately 1,875 pieces of mail – including 627 pieces of first class, 873 pieces of standard class, two pieces of certified mail, 99 general election ballots destined for residents in West Orange, and 276 campaign flyers from local candidates for West Orange Town Council and Board of Education – were recovered from dumpsters in North Arlington and West Orange on Oct. 2, 2020, and Oct. 5, 2020. The mail had been scheduled to be delivered on Sept. 28, Oct. 1, and Oct. 2, 2020, to addresses on certain postal routes in Orange and West Orange. On the delivery dates for which mail was recovered, Beauchene was the only mail carrier assigned to deliver mail to the addresses on the recovered mail.
Beauchene faces up to 5 1/2 years in prison and up to $230,000 in fines.
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Earlier this week, Virginia election officials put out a statement warning the public that ballots may have been stolen when 6 mailboxes were broken into over the weekend.