LANDOVER, Md. - Police have identified a 26-year-old postal worker who was gunned down while delivering mail as Tyson Barnette of Upper Marlboro. Barnette was on his assigned route in the 1600 block of Reed Street in Landover, around 7:30 p.m. Saturday when police say he was shot multiple times.
Prince George's County police are offering a $25,000 reward for help in identifying suspects.
The U.S. Postal Inspection Service is putting up a $100,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and a conviction.
Resident Paulette Richardson said she "knew they were gunshots because I know what gunshots sound like. I started running."
Kenneth Lerch is President of the Rockville branch of the National Association of Letter Carriers, and although he didn't represent Barnette or the area where he was killed, Lerch has been the loudest voice in trying to get postal workers off the streets before it gets dark.
"I'm outraged. I'm more than angry. It didn't have to happen," Lerch said.
He's been outspoken about the dangers for years and brought it up again just last week in a meeting with the Post Master.
Last year in a meeting with the District manager Lerch made a grim prediction.
"I said something, someone is seriously going to be injured or worse, or worse, and it happened."
Union members say their routes are longer, they're understaffed and they say after this tragedy something must change.
"It's bound to happen again if something is not done about it, it is inherently dangerous to deliver mail in the dark," Lerch said.
"It gets dark at 5 [p.m.], at 7 [p.m.] it's pitch dark out here, Richardson said. "Nobody should be out here delivering mail. I think it's wrong."
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