Federal prosecutors arrested and charged a 21-year-old Indiana man in the murder of letter carrier Angela Summers on Monday afternoon. Summers, 45, was not delivering mail to his home due to an "aggressive dog," according to the criminal complaint. The letter carriers' union believes the situation, which had been going on for some time, was exacerbated by the suspect not receiving his coronavirus stimulus check.
U.S. Attorney Josh Minkler's office has charged Tony Cushinberry-Mays, 21, with second-degree murder, assaulting a federal employee and discharging a firearm during a crime, according to court documents obtained by the Indy Star. Cushingberry-Mays was arrested Tuesday night. Authorities said he confronted Summers at around 4 p.m. Monday as she was delivering neighbor's mail. Summers sprayed him with mace, then he shot her, according to authorities.
"He stated the letter carrier was not delivering the mail because she was having a problem with the dog at his residence," Postal Inspector Joseph J. De St Jean wrote in the criminal complaint. He added that Cushingberry-Mays repeatedly asked Summer to deliver his mail. "He said the letter carrier turned around, grabbed her mace spray and sprayed (him)," De St Jean wrote. "Cushingberry-Mays then pulled his handgun from the right side of his waistband... and fired one shot."
Mail was curtailed on April 12 or 13, Paul Toms, the president of the National Association of Letter carriers Branch 39, told Fox59. Summers sent several dog notes to the owners at the address, asking them to keep the pets away from her when she delivered the mail.
“Yes, there was a history on this for quite a while, as I understand it,” Toms said. “Dog letters had been sent. That’s a form to the patron when a dog is a nuisance or a danger or vicious. Three dog letters, one to warn them, a second one a second warning, and then a curtailment of mail. That’s what they had proceeded to there.”
Two days before Summers was killed, she wrote a Facebook post about having a stimulus check for the person at the address. She feared delivering the check due to a dog at the home. "I want something like this to never happen again... it should never happen," Toms added.
"We are saddened to learn of such a tragic death of one of our own employees and coworkers," the U.S. Postal Service said in a statement to Fox 59. "Angela Summers was a City Carrier Assistant at the Indianapolis Post Office, Linwood Station, having started with the Postal Service on 06/23/2018. Our thoughts and deepest sympathies go out to her family and friends, including the many people she worked with at the Postal Service. Employee assistance services are being offered to the family and co-workers. No additional information is available."