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Coupons for Kohl’s are like those infamous coupons for Bed, Bath & Beyond – they’re always showing up in your mailbox. But for some residents of a suburban Detroit community, they suddenly stopped coming. Not because Kohl’s didn’t like them anymore, but because their letter carrier allegedly liked Kohl’s a little too much.

In a criminal complaint filed in federal court yesterday, U.S. Postal Service employee Joann Limbaugh-Nedo is accused of stealing Kohl’s coupons from the mail and using them for herself.

Her alleged scheme began to unravel in July, when a loss prevention supervisor from a Kohl’s store in West Lake Township, Michigan called Postal Service officials. She said she had witnessed a customer come into the store several times “using multiple $10 and $5 off promotional coupons during checkout”, which she determined were “more coupons than any one person should obtain through normal means.” The supervisor suspected the coupons were being stolen from the mail.

How would she come to that conclusion? It seems the customer in question would show up to shop, wearing her Postal Service uniform.

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Way to go incognito.

Investigators examined store surveillance images and, according to the complaint, they identified the customer as Limbaugh-Nedo, a mail carrier in the nearby town of Waterford. They managed to pinpoint two separate transactions in which coupons that were used contained unique identifiers, tying them to the customers to whom they were originally issued. Both customers’ addresses were on Limbaugh-Nedo’s delivery route.

When questioned by U.S. Postal Service special agents, Limbaugh-Nedo initially denied any wrongdoing. “I shop a lot at Kohl’s,” she’s quoted in the complaint as saying, claiming that the coupons belonged to her and her daughter. “I’m not taking them from the mail. I’m not going to steal.”

When confronted with the findings that at least two of the coupons she allegedly used belonged to people on her delivery route, Limbaugh-Nedo changed her tune, according to the complaint. She took “just a couple,” she’s quoted as saying. “I’d say five times, I don’t know.” Eventually, investigators say, she admitted taking the coupons “because it was convenient,” and said she “knew it was wrong.” The complaint notes that she signed a form offering her resignation, but then changed her mind and rescinded it.

Limbaugh-Nedo is now being charged with mail theft, a federal crime, which carries a maximum sentence of up to five years in prison and a fine, if convicted.

And Kohl’s customers in Waterford, Michigan can rest easier knowing that their mailboxes will once more be stuffed with coupons – and that their mail carrier may soon be wearing a different kind of uniform.

One Comment

  1. Kohls shouldn’t RAT out their customers

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