Vancouver couple sentenced for Christmas gift theft spree




A Vancouver couple was sentenced Tuesday to federal prison for stealing Christmas presents in a two-week spree in December 2010.

Jason May, 35, was sentenced to two and a half years in prison and three years of supervised release. Jolynn May, 35, was given one year in prison, three years of supervised release, four months of home detention and 80 hours of community service, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Seattle.

The two also were ordered to pay nearly $70,000 in restitution to the U.S. Postal Service as part of U.S. District Court Judge Benjamin Settle’s sentence.

The Mays pleaded guilty last spring to theft or receipt of stolen mail. A third Vancouver defendant, Mychal Lecouris, 31, was sentenced in July for his role in the thefts.

Prosecutors said the Mays were apprehended Christmas Eve 2010, after a search of their apartment and car turned up merchandise and toys apparently stolen from several people. Some of the items had been wrapped and placed under the Mays’ tree.

The arrest followed a spree in which the Mays stole packages from porches throughout Southwest Washington and by using tools to pry open locked security mailboxes, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Among presents stolen were a Target gift card, a Powell’s Books box, a Nordstrom package and several new toys, according to charging papers. In one instance, the two returned stolen gifts to Nordstrom for $300 cash, prosecutors said.

Victims wrote to the judge, telling about how the thefts impacted their Christmases. A 9-year-old wrote: “I am so sad my Christmas presents got stolen off our front porch. My aunt and uncle worked very hard to make those gifts,” according to the attorney’s office’s press release.

In handing down his sentence, the judge said the crime “had an impact on the lives of others in different and emotional ways. You stole diabetic supplies vital to that person, but there also was emotional damage. People found their purpose in giving gifts at Christmas affected by your crime, “according to the press release.