I-TEAM: Certified mail failures continue with felons, traffic tickets and more

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CLEVELAND (WJW) — The FOX 8 I-Team has now uncovered more problems tied to breakdowns with the United States Postal Service certified mail affecting everything from traffic tickets to cases involving dangerous felons.

Weeks ago, the I-Team revealed the Postal Service not recording signatures when delivering certified mail blaming COVID-19.

Now, more questions.

We reviewed dozens of files for felony crimes in Cuyahoga County Court. We found straight lines, scribbles, and other unintelligible writing on records for delivery of court papers sent to suspects in stolen property cases, weapons cases, abduction cases and more. Other records simply show “C-19” for COVID-19.

How would anyone know who actually got official documents?

We also caught up once more with Adam Sywanyk. Last month, he told us he never got a Civil Court notice, and he showed us a delivery record was unreadable.

Since our report, a local attorney helped him convince a judge he should not be punished for missing a court deadline after questionable delivery.

“I want to thank you guys very much for all your involvement. You guys are doing right by the people. That’s my main concern,” Sywanyk said today.

How can some scribbles be considered any kind of record of delivery? The I-Team again requested an interview with the Postal Service. And a spokesperson gave the same answer she’s been giving for months. Politely, the Postal Service said, “no.”

Meantime, Ray Taylor says he tried to pay a traffic ticket sending a check through certified mail. We found it took 26 days to get delivered a few miles away. Taylor had to make a special trip to pay in person.

“They need to get on top of it,” he said. “If I did that job, and you did that job like that, we would be fired immediately, or at least have a meeting about this, or talked to, or something.”

In a couple of the criminal cases we checked that had vague delivery records, we noticed suspects are now wanted.

So, we have more investigating to do to expose what’s slipping through the cracks with certified mail delivery. And while we’ve looked at the local impact, what’s happening with certified mail is now getting attention in Washington, D.C., as a national problem as well.

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