Wifredo A. Ferrer, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Henry Gutierrez, Postal Inspector in Charge, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and James K. Loftus, Director, Miami-Dade Police Department, announce the arrest of Pikerson Mentor, 29, and Saubnet Dwayne Politasse, 23, both of Miami, in connection with the December 6, 2010 murder of U.S. Postal Service letter carrier Bruce Parton. Both defendants made their initial appearances in federal court this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jonathan Goodman. A detention hearing has been scheduled for Tuesday, May 10, 2011 at 10 a.m.
The complaint, filed today in federal court, charges both Mentor and Politasse with a number of crimes, including the murder of a federal government employee while in the course of his duties, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 1114 and 111; car jacking of a Postal truck with death resulting, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2119; theft of a key for a U.S. Postal Service mail receptacle, in violation of title 18, United States Code, Section 1704; use of a firearm in the commission of a crime of violence, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 924(j); and conspiracy to do all of the above., in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371. If convicted, the defendants each face a maximum statutory sentence of up to life.
According to the complaint, on December 6, 2010, Bruce Parton (hereinafter, â€œthe victimâ€) was employed as a letter carrier with the United States Postal Service. On that date, the victim was working his postal route and arrived at the Monte Carlo Condominiums on 165th Street, Miami, Florida. The victim got out of his assigned postal truck and walked into the condominium complex to deliver and pickup mail. While inside the complex, the victim was shot twice by an assailant and died at the scene.
U.S. Attorney Wifredo Ferrer stated, â€œMy sincerest sympathies go out to the Parton family for the cold-blooded killing of their loved one while doing his job. It is my hope that todayâ€™s charges at least provides them with a sense of closure and hope for justice. Public servants are often unsung heroes. They help run our government, enforce our laws, and provide critical services, like delivering our mail. Their dedication and commitment to service, often at great personal sacrifice, are deeply appreciated by all of us.â€
â€œThe protection and safety of our letter carriers is the number one priority of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. These arrests represent the relentless effort by the law enforcement community to ensure that those responsible for harming our civil servants are brought to justice,â€ said Henry Gutierrez, Postal Inspector in Charge, U.S. Postal Inspection Service.
â€œThese arrests are the result of a massive effort by law enforcement agencies to bring two ruthless murderers to justice. We stand committed with our state and federal partners in the continued effort to not rest, until all violent offenders are brought to justice,â€ said Miami-Dade Police Director James K. Loftus.
According to the affidavit filed in support of the complaint, the assailant stole the victimâ€™s U.S Postal key and the keys to the postal truck. Postal keys are used by letter carriers to open and close mailboxes. Witnesses saw the postal truck speeding away from the crime scene shortly after they heard shots from inside the Condominium complex. The postal truck was later found abandoned. Subsequently, investigators received a tip that a person named â€œDiddy,â€ a person named â€œGangsta,â€ and another person committed the murder to steal the victimâ€™s mail key so they could use the key to steal mail and commit identity theft and tax fraud.
After months of painstaking investigation, including, review of surveillance tapes, witness interviews, analysis of driver and vehicle information records, review of Miami-Dade Police Department and other criminal records, and analysis of telephone toll records (the details of the investigation are provided in the attached criminal complaint), Diddy was ultimately identified as defendant Mentor and Gangsta was identified as defendant Politasse.
On May 4, 2011, officers from the North Miami Police Department arrested defendant Politasse for driving without a license. Inside the car, under the driverâ€™s seat, a police officer discovered a unique looking key, which was later identified as a U.S. Postal key with an obliterated serial number. According to the complaint affidavit, in response to police questioning, Politasse described his and defendant Mentorâ€™s purported actions in the events of December 6. Thereafter, early in the morning of May 5, 2011, defendant Mentor was arrested.
A complaint is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
Mr. Ferrer commends the investigative efforts of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the Miami-Dade Police Department. Mr. Ferrer also thanked the City of North Miami Police Department for their assistance on this case. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony LaCosta.