MIAMI (AP) -- A U.S. Postal Service carrier is accused of stealing a Miami-Dade County mail-in ballot, 10 gift cards and four prepaid debit cards earlier this month, federal authorities said.
A federal complaint filed by the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General said that between Oct. 5 and 16, Crystal Nicole Myrie "embezzled letters, postal cards and mail which came into her possession intended to be carried or delivered by her," the Miami Herald reported.
The mail-in ballot had been sent to a resident by the Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections Office on Oct. 6, the complaint said.
Myrie made her first appearance in federal court on Monday. An attorney for Myrie was not listed on the court docket, and it wasn't immediately clear whether she entered a plea.
On Friday, two postal inspector agents questioned Myrie, who admitted to stealing several prepaid debit cards that were supposed to be delivered to a customer on her route and using them at retail stores, the newspaper reported.
After the interview, the investigators told Myrie she would have to turn in her postal identification, the Herald reported. She told them the ID was in her car in the parking lot. They asked if there was mail or any other items in her car and at first she told them no. She then changed her answer to yes.
"Upon approaching the vehicle, (one agent) observed, in plain view through a rear window, several postal service satchels containing white envelopes in the back seat of Myrie's personal vehicle," according to the complaint. "Myrie is not authorized to deliver mail from her personal vehicle."
The two postal inspector agents searched her car and found "undelivered mail for the zip code serviced by Myrie" in Miami Beach, the complaint said.
They also found 36 political flyers and 150 other pieces of mail in her vehicle, the newspaper reported.
"By stealing (the victim's) vote-by-mail ballot, Myrie deprived (the victim) of her right to vote," the complaint said.
Myrie "admitted that she has been stealing mail sporadically (on her route) for almost two years," the complaint said.