Tennessee Man Sentenced to 11 Years Imprisonment for Assaulting Letter Carrier

Memphis, TN – Bernard M. Jones, 35, has been sentenced to 132 months in federal prison for aggravated assault of a federal employee and discharge of a firearm. Acting U.S. Attorney Joseph C. Murphy Jr., announced the sentence today.

According to information presented in court, on September 4, 2019, at approximately 7:30 p.m., Jones was in the process of committing the crime of burglary of a motor vehicle. Meanwhile, the victim, a U.S. Postal Service employee, was preparing to take First Class mail from the Jet Cove Annex to the Memphis Processing & Distribution Center in downtown Memphis. While loading the mail into his USPS staff vehicle, the victim, observed someone moving around inside his personal vehicle parked approximately 50 yards away in the employee parking lot at the Memphis Priority Mail Annex. The victim drove the staff vehicle near his pickup truck and saw the defendant exit his pickup truck.

The defendant shot multiple times at the victim as he escaped in his postal vehicle. As the victim drove away, the defendant followed him in a Nissan Sentra and continued to shoot. During the investigation, United States Postal Inspectors determined two bullets struck the hood and several other locations on the postal vehicle. Law enforcement located two 9MM Luger shell casings from the shooting scene. The suspect, along with a female accomplice, fled the scene in a blue Nissan Sentra. Postal Inspectors later identified Bernard M. Jones as the shooter. Jones, a convicted felon, is also a member of the Gangster Disciples Street Gang, and as a result of his prior felony conviction history, is prohibited by federal law from possession of firearms or ammunition.

“Armed assaults on employees of the Postal Service” said Acting United States Attorney Joseph C. Murphy, Jr., “will not be tolerated and our office will prosecute these cases to the full extent of the law.”

“Our agency is very pleased with the sentence Judge Lipman imposed. There is no excuse for the acts of violence that the defendant inflicted upon a U.S. Postal Service employee engaged in his official duties. The United States Postal Inspection Service will not tolerate anyone who assaults a postal employee engaged in their official duties and we will aggressively investigate these cases,” said Tommy D. Coke, Inspector In Charge of the Atlanta Division.

Jones pled guilty on December 18, 2020, before U.S. District Judge Sheryl H. Lipman. On March 24, 2021, Judge Lipman sentenced Jones to 11 years in federal prison to be followed by three years of supervised release. There is no parole in the federal system.

The United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) investigated this case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Wendy K. Cornejo prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.