Batesville men sentenced to prison for robbery of postal worker

Published 11:30 am Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Three Batesville men were sentenced last week to more than 10 years in prison for the armed robbery of a U.S. Postal Service contract carrier.

According to court documents, Jamarr Smith, 38, Gilbert McThunel II, 37, and Thomas Iroko Ayodele, 40, were each convicted on Feb. 24 of using a dangerous weapon to rob a contract postal carrier of money belonging to the U.S. Postal Service and conspiracy to rob the employee.

Evidence presented during a four-day jury trial revealed that on Feb. 5, 2018, Smith, McThunel and Ayodele drove to Lake Cormorant, Miss., where the Postal Service’s contract carrier was robbed as he picked up mail for delivery to the Distribution Center in Memphis.

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Evidence showed that when the carrier arrived at the Lake Cormorant Post Office at approximately 5:15 p.m. to pick up the mail, McThunel approached the carrier, struck him multiple times in the face with a firearm, threatened to kill him, and then stole bags containing U.S. Postal Service money from the carrier’s truck.

Ayodele dropped McThunel off at the Lake Cormorant Post Office prior to the robbery and picked him up afterward, while Smith acted as a lookout from a separate vehicle.

At the conclusion of the sentencing hearing, District Court Judge Sharion Aycock sentenced Smith and McThunel each to 121 months in prison and Ayodele to 136 months in prison. Each defendant will serve five years of supervision following their release from prison. 

The defendants were also ordered to pay restitution to the U.S. Postal Service for the money taken in the robbery and to the contract carrier for medical costs associated with injuries he received during the robbery.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Robert Mims and Clyde McGee prosecuted the case.