Residents in Seaford and Massapequa started complaining to the post office that they weren't getting their mail, and federal officials began watching the 24-year-old mail carrier on their route, Peter Paskett.
According to a federal court complaint, one federal agent saw Paskett throw mail into the garbage in Massapequa earlier this month.
Last week, agents approached Paskett about the missing mail and he allegedly confessed to tossing mail in the trash more than a dozen times over the last four months. The court complaint says Paskett said he knew throwing away mail was wrong.
Paskett began working for the U.S. Postal Service in June. Officials say he's still employed pending the outcome of the investigation but no longer delivers mail.
Prosecutors say federal agents were able to recover more than 1,000 pieces of mail Paskett allegedly tossed in the trash in the last month. Nearly 150 of the letters found were posted first-class.
Paskett was arraigned last week on a felony charge of mail destruction and released on his own recognizance.
Information on an attorney for him wasn't immediately available.