Inmate's Letters Frustrate Recipient

A metro area woman can't get unwanted letters to stop pouring into her mailbox, letters from a Nebraska prison inmate.

Kathy Lorentz dreads going through her mail and it's not because of bills or junk mail. It's the letters she gets from an inmate she doesn't even know.

"I get them weekly, anywhere from five to seven letters a week now,” she says.

The letters are from 62-year-old Gary Blankenship, serving 10-years-to-life for second-degree murder.

The letters aren't addressed to Lorentz, but to Blankenship's parents who lived in her home years ago. Blankenship murdered his brother in the 1970s.

"He wishes them a merry Christmas, wishes them a happy birthday, it's almost like he doesn't know his parents are deceased,” says Lorentz.

Lorentz contacted both the post office and the prison in an effort to stop the letters, but they kept coming. The post office tells WOWT they can’t legally stop mail from arriving because the sender has paid them to deliver it.

A call to the prison only worked briefly.

"The new warden and warden Dennis Bakewell said, 'I'll help you. We'll get these stopped,' They stopped for about a week and then they just started back up again," said Lorentz.

Lorentz also worries that Blankenship will come knocking if he’s ever paroled, so she’s on a special list to be notified if that happens.

In the meantime she says, "They just keep coming and coming and nobody will help me get them stopped. I want the letters just stopped coming to this address, that's the only thing I'm asking."

A spokesman at the Nebraska State Penitentiary in Lincoln tells WOWT he will personally look into what can be done to stop these letters. He says they will give Blankenship a direct order to stop sending the letters and he will ask the prison's attorney if something more can be done.