A Paterson man faces a decade in prison for allegedly assaulting and then trying to rob two U.S. Postal Service mail carriers, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced on Wednesday.

The attacks occurred on January 20, 2021, when 20-year old Yeniser Cruz Perez went up to one of the mail carriers, displayed what investigators said appeared to be a firearm, and ordered the carrier to give him a USPS key that is used to access mail collection boxes and apartment panels.

When Perez was informed by the mail carrier that they didn't have such a key, he took off.

He took his scheme to Woodland Park later that day and approached a second mail carrier, again demanding the key and again displaying what appeared to be a firearm.

When Perez was informed a second time, by a second mail carrier, that they didn't have such a key, he took off again.

Flash forward, he was charged by indictment with two counts of assault and attempted robbery of persons having control over mail matter and government property.

Perez will be arraigned at a date yet to be determined.

He could face a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, on each count of assault and attempted robbery.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Calle of the Health Care Fraud Unit.

Defense counsel: Carol Dominguez Esq., Assistant Federal Public Defender, Newark.

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