Jane Harper of The Virginian-Pilot recently published an article about a Norfolk, VA postal service employee who was arrested last week and charged with taking bribes and diverting packages filled with drugs. Gary Kent Turner Jr. was arrested on Monday May 24 and has been released on a personal recognizance bond.
The investigation into Turner began in May 2019 when the USPS and the Inspector General’s Office discovered that numerous packages of suspected drugs were being sent to an address on Turner’s delivery route. Hidden surveillance cameras were later installed in his postal vehicle. The surveillance footage from the vehicle and from security cameras at a local parking garage assisted in the investigation.
The footage revealed that Turner met with an individual identified as M.C. approximately 15 times from November 2019 to May of 2020. “The meetings took place at the garage and other locations along Turner’s route” writes Harper. The footage also revealed Turner receiving an envelope in exchange for giving packages to M.C., and he was often recorded counting money after the exchanges.
The investigators seized a package meant for Turner’s route in May of 2020 and discovered that it contained 3.5 pounds of marijuana. Investigators arrested M.C. weeks later and found around 3 pounds of marijuana in package, a .380 caliber pistol, and approximately $12,000 in cash.
Investigators also found numerous phone calls between Turner and M.C. The phone calls took place from July 2019 to March 2020 and seemed to have been placed before or after Turner delivered the packages. A confidential source informed investigators that Turner made $100 per package and netted $2,000 to $3,000 a month for those deliveries. The investigation also revealed that one of the addresses that packages were sent to did not exist and the other address was under renovation at the time.
Turner is currently charged with one count of bribery of a public official. That charge carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison.
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