Postal worker abducted at gunpoint by masked men allegedly looking for drugs
PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WJAR) - The broad daylight abduction of a U.S. postal worker in Rhode Island is now part of a federal criminal probe involving drugs mailed to the state from Puerto Rico, police say.
Court documents detail the June 1 abduction of a letter carrier in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. He was held at gunpoint by two masked men, who he says drove him to his own home, said they were watching him and asked questions about a package he delivered in May to a house on Melrose Avenue.
The men claimed the package was empty. It was allegedly supposed to have contained drugs.
When the three arrived at the postal worker’s house, the worker said he didn’t have his house keys. The masked men then drove him back to the scene of the abduction.
“It is a scary thought, and thank God, that carrier is all set. He’s OK,” said Rick Blinkhorn, a retired USPS letter carrier.
The incident sparked a fast-moving federal and state investigation by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and Rhode Island State Police. Surveillance teams watched packages from Puerto Rico being delivered to homes in various Rhode Island cities.
A search warrant of three packages discovered Saran-wrapped bundles of cocaine next to metal tins of dominoes.
Federal agents arrested Edgar Medina, Andres Garay and Ronald Hall on Wednesday and charged them all with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine. Kidnapping charges are likely to follow.
Investigators found black surgical masks in the suspects’ cars, the same masks the postal worker says his abductors were wearing. The victim also identified their gray Chrysler sedan.
In Medina’s apartment, detectives discovered a handwritten note that read, “Need full name Physical + vehicle description of carrier(s) on this very date You will be compensated someone will meet you on Friday or Saturday.”
Documents show all three suspects have served federal prison terms for previous drug-related convictions. They are being held at the Wyatt Detention Center.
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