Competing protective orders denied in Ekwok Post Office dustup

Mar 20, 2017

Judge Reigh did not find sufficient evidence of stalking involving two post office employees and Ekwok resident David McNease, who is often on the edge of "rage" when picking up his mail, says postmaster.

The Dillingham Superior Court entertained four separate protective order requests Thursday, all involving one disgruntled patron of the Ekwok Post Office.

Audio Transcript: Ekwok Postmaster Matthew White says state troopers and officials up his USPS chain of command recommended he file a stalking protective order request against David McNease, who moved from Dillingham to Ekwok last fall.

At a court hearing Thursday, Judge Tina Reigh asked White to describe the instances of abusive behavior he alleges McNease displayed at the post office.

"Well they’re more of a rant," White said. "He’s a large, imposing person. He’s right on the edge of rage. He’s loud, and it’s always the same … you can’t really rationalize any of his complaints, he just goes on to the next thing before receiving an answer or accepting a rational and logical answer.”

White said he had these run-ins about once a month since the fall, and that he and another post office employee had considered the behavior threatening.

He told the court the small post office is doing all it can to deal with frequent large orders, mainly of dog food, that McNease has shipped into the village.

"Right now there’s thirty-nine large packages in the lobby because there isn’t room in the back office to hold them and wait for people to get here. I have been working for five or six months with the city and with the post office to remove a wall and extend the size of our back office here, and it hasn’t come through yet."

McNease requested a U.S. Postal Service investigation into his claims that important mail has been withheld and that his packages are not properly secured. He said he has not had a very welcoming experience in Ekwok, attempting to lay some of the blame for that on White and another post office employee. He filed counter protective order requests against both of them.

“They’ve affected my life, they’ve affected my family’s. And I do fear from them," McNease said. "And if this court goes wrong, I’m going to have to leave here, because I do fear for my family.”

Judge Tina Reigh did not find in favor of any of the protective order requests, saying there was not enough evidence of actual stalking. She did suggest to McNease that he tone it down a bit to help alleviate some of the tension. 

Reach the author at dave@kdlg.org or 907.842.5281.