Postal Worker Accused of Stealing from Greeting Cards

DUBOIS – A DuBois woman accused of stealing money from greeting cards while working at an area post office is now facing additional charges.

Several victims who were missing greeting cards and money from them contacted police after reading about the charges against Jody Lynne Cavazza, 56, 382 DuBois Rockton Rd., DuBois, in a Courier-Express article on April 13.

Cavazza is charged with two counts each of theft by unlawful taking and receiving stolen property in the original case. In a new case filed recently, she is charged with 11 counts each of theft and receiving stolen property. She waived her right to a preliminary hearing during centralized court.

Cavazza, who is an employee of the Rockton Post Office, allegedly took cash, gift cards, lottery tickets and more from greeting cards going through the Rockton Post Office. Some of the cards were delivered opened or resealed and others were never delivered at all.

According to the affidavits of probable cause, the first victim contacted the DuBois-based state police on Feb. 21, reporting cards received by his son, which appeared to have been opened. The cards, sent from his grandparents, had contained money. The last card he received for Valentine’s Day was sent with $10 in it, but it had been opened and resealed. When the boy received it, there was no money inside. He estimated there was approximately $100 missing in the last six months.

The victim then mailed his son a card with $5 bill and a $10 Wal-Mart gift card inside it. When the family got the card, there was neither cash nor a gift card in it. He provided police with the account number on the gift card. Police then contacted the DuBois Wal-Mart store.

Store employees confirmed the gift card had been used toward a $63.75 purchase with the remainder being paid by a credit card. The loss prevention officer was able to give police photos and surveillance video showing Cavazza completing the transaction. It was also confirmed the credit card that completed the sale had Cavazza’s name on it.

On March 27, investigators worked with the DuBois Postmaster who arranged for an orange greeting card with $30 in cash inside to be mailed through the Rockton Post Office. It was determined by surveillance of her at the post office that the card had been opened and the money removed.

When an investigator approached her at the office asking for it, she said she did not know where it was at. After she was assured the orange envelope was in that post office, she pulled it out from underneath a couple sheets of paper. It had been opened along the top. When asked where the money was, she reached into her pocket and pulled out a $10 and a $20 bill.

Cavazza then was questioned about the envelope and she stated it was the only one she had opened that day. She claimed it was only her second or third time to open cards and she only obtained $20 to $25 from them. She denied taking any gift cards.

The investigator advised her that her story did not coincide with what the investigation had uncovered. Then she admitted she started opening mail about a year ago when her hours were cut. She said it was a “spur of the moment” type thing and she generally resealed the envelopes with tape or a glue stick. She stated she knew it was wrong, but she did think she would be caught.

From April 13 through April 28, police received several additional complaints of missing money after the story of Cavazza’s charges ran in the paper.

A victim reported she sent her niece a card with $20 in it in February. When she did not get the card, McGarvey called the post office. She spoke to a woman who advised her to wait because it could have been sent to the wrong zip code. When it didn’t show up, the victim sent another card with a check, which her niece did receive.

A victim stated she sent two people birthday cards, which they did not receive. One of the cards included tickets to a magic show. The recipient of the card called the post office and was given a number to make a complaint. This victim called twice but never received a return call. She then went back to the post office and spoke with Cavazza. She was told to go to the DuBois post office. This victim then discovered her complaints were never received.

On April 15, a victim told police her daughter had sent her tickets for the Grand Old Opry in a card, which she never received. She talked to someone at the Rockton post office about it, but they were unable to locate it.

Another victim told police there were two birthday cards with cash intended for her daughter that she never received.  She also stated some friends helped her raise money for her family in the Philippines and sent her a check. She never received it.

On April 16, a victim reported that in January she sent her daughter a card containing $20 worth of lottery tickets that she never received.

A victim reported his mother-in-law had sent cards to his children in October that contained $20 each. Only one of the cards arrived.

On April 23, a victim reported that three relatives in different areas sent her birthday cards in February that she never received. One contained two $20 lottery tickets. She contacted the post office and was told there were three reasons they could be lost: they had the wrong zip code, they were sent to the wrong address or were chewed up in the machine. She said she was suspicious because the woman answered so quickly and she felt as if the employee was giving her excuses. It was unlikely her relatives sent the cards to the wrong address when she had been living in the same residence for years and the idea of all three cards being chewed up seemed unlikely.

A victim reported three birthday cards were delivered open at her house in January. There was no attempt to reseal the cards. She spoke to Cavazza at the post office and she told her to file a complaint with the DuBois Post Office. The victim noted there were no problems before Cavazza was employed at the Rockton Post Office.

A victim reported he knew of three cards sent to him that he did not receive. One had a $25 Visa gift card and the others had $20 cash in each. He received several other opened cards in the mail between Christmas and March.

A victim reported that Target had overcharged him and he was sent a gift card for more than $22, as a refund. He never received it. When he contacted Target, they said it was mailed in mid-March.

A victim reported that she never received three cards sent to her in September. One had $25 in cash and the others had $20 each. Her sister contacted the Rockton Post Office and spoke with Cavazza, who was rude to her.

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