DENVER (CBS4) – A former Denver-area postal worker who stole more than 11,000 packages and sold the items for more than $85,000 has been sentenced to 2.5 years in federal prison.

The judge sentenced David Schmauder, 48, to the maximum sentence Monday. He pleaded guilty in August to two felony counts of theft by mail.

Authorities say Schmauder stole packages over two years at a Highlands Ranch post office. The items included DVDs, CDs and lingerie from Victoria’s Secret.

Authorities say Schmauder sold most of the items to a store in Littleton.

“A number of people in the public in the Littleton area were complaining they weren’t receiving their packages,” David Montoyoa from the USPS Inspector General’s Office told CBS4 in August. “In his vehicle at that time we found about 167 pieces of mail and at his residence about 17 pieces of mail.”

Scmauder was allowed to walk out of court Tuesday but will have to report to prison soon. He almost didn’t get to walk out when he got into a shouting match with the judge at his sentencing. He admitted to stealing more than 50 packages a night, several times a week.

The Postal Service estimates the losses at $283,913, but say there’s no way to know how much was stolen.

Schmauder claimed he was addicted to stealing and did it to pay off his debts.

(TM and © Copyright 2010 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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