Tulare postal worker pleads guilty to stealing $50,000 in packages

The postal worker was busted after stealing parcels for seven years.

A Visalia man pleaded guilty in federal court to stealing tens of thousands of dollars from the U.S. Postal Service. 

U.S. Attorney Phillip Talbert announced the guilty plea. 


The big picture: Nathan Vaughn Southard, 34, was an employee at the Tulare Main Post Office. 

  • On Oct. 19, 2023, Southard stole a parcel from the post office because he believed it contained marijuana. He had intended to sell the package for profit. 
  • He admitted in court documents to stealing parcels over the past seven years worth around $50,000. 

What we’re watching: Southard will be sentenced on Sep. 9, 2024, by U.S. District Judge Jennifer Thurston. 

  • He faces a maximum of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. 

What they’re saying: “Narcotics and theft offenses committed by Postal Service personnel are completely unacceptable,” said U.S. Postal Service office of Inspector General Special Agent-in-Charge Christopher Paige. 

  • “The special agents for the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General are steadfast in their dedication to maintaining the integrity of the U.S. Postal Service. The USPS OIG values our working relationship with the U.S. Attorney’s Office and various law enforcement agencies in holding Postal Service personnel accountable for their actions when they violate a position of trust.” 
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