Eureka Postal Worker Says He was the Victim of a Racist Attack While on the Job

US postal service

A postal worker in Eureka is alleging that he was verbally attacked and then physically assaulted while he delivered mail Friday, May 1 on Albee Street.

Phillippe Tipanda said, about 2:50 in the afternoon, he was listening to music with earbuds and sorting mail as he walked when he thought he heard someone say, “Hey, nigger.”

He says the voice came from a nearby apartment building. He turned towards the building, taking the earbuds out, and asked the person, a woman, to repeat what they’d said. He wanted an apology, he said. But then a man came out of the apartment building.

“A gentleman came out [of the building] first.” he said. Then several women followed. Again, he says, he was called a nigger this time by all of the individuals. Tipanda said he was paying attention to the women when the man punched him on his jaw.

“I dropped my mail and started to defend myself,” he said.

Someone called law enforcement and the women and the man went back into their residence. Tipanda retrieved the mail. When the Eureka Police Department (EPD) arrived, Tipanda said he wanted to press charges.

After Tipanda spoke with the Eureka Police Department, “I had to go to the hospital,” he said. “My jaw was in pain. I had to go for them to look at it and make sure it was not broken.”

As of this point, Tipanda said, he does not believe charges have been filed.

However, Brittany Powell of the Eureka Police Department ssaid that even though there are conflicting statements on who started the incident, the case has been forwarded to the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office for prosecution.

Later, according to Tipanda, another co-worker told him that he had had the a similar experience with the same individuals at the same apartment building calling him the same racial epithet. However, Tipanda said, that postal worker chose not to confront the individuals and walked away.

Tipanda says that he is trying to have a “good attitude about it so I can do my job right.”  However, he will be continuing to deliver the mail on this route and will have to walk by the same home.



  • If its any consolation, the combined mental power of all those people in that apartment couldn’t run a pez dispenser

  • How long till Al Sharpton arrives? Any $ in it for him? Maybe not.

  • Ooops, I’m pretty sure interfering with the delivery of the mail is a Federal crime not to mention the actual physical attack.

  • Conflicting statements uh? Well, everybody knows those darned mail men are well known for walking all over town pickin’ it with people. I bet the mail man never lets someone who is running his mouth get close enough for a sucker punch again. Glad he’s good to go. My only complaint with the reporting here is that nowhere in the article does it say if the mail man got his licks in.

  • The mailman says he defended himself and the EPD spokesperson said that there were conflicting statements over who started the incident….


    Pacific Heights has had white power for years and years. A skinhead left a black guy in a truck on Glen, and only white people get promoted at Winclass.

  • Okay. I just yelled.

  • All of the facts are not in yet, I don’t want to pre-judge, but calling someone the n-word even if there was some sort of verbal exchange before the physical assault , rightly, would enrage a person. I detest that word and react vehemently when I hear someone use it. I believe that it is highly unlikely that the mailman started this with no provocation. Hopefully, there is an unbiased witness that can facilitate getting to the truth.

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  • I guess those a-holes don’t need their mail….I would make a point to leave it at the post office…accidentally of course…

  • Forwarded it to the DA?
    The real justice for man is delivered by a much more righteous hand from the hand of God!
    Sorry Mr Tipanda, we feel the same as you about this! Don’t forget whoever did this is most likely a drug crazed mind possessed tweeeeeeeker!

    Good luck in the future, carry a taster or get a concealed carry permit if the US Postal service allows this! [edit]

  • witness digital


    that residence or possibly entire street will be marked for non-delivery and the folk living there WILL have to go to the main post office to pick up mail..
    have seen it happen over a single aggressive dog.. no mail for six months on that street.. till the idiot owner moved taking the dog..
    part of the NALC contract…

    someone whose SO is a postalperson

  • Any chance of followup, given there doesn’t seem to be coverage elsewhere?

    Thanks for your work.

  • Mr Tippanda… those idiots on Albee don’t deserve mail from ANYONE! I can’t believe your supervisor would allow them mail service after this! You are a federal employee! Background checked…drug tested… licensed. … you are out there faithfully every day doing a dam good job…there should be no question of “he said she said” your word on what went down should be taken as evidence enough! Your supervisor has done you a serious disservice if those Albee idiots are still allowed street mail service. They should be made to walk their racists selves in to pick it up from now on. What idiots!!

  • But the mailman didn’t say that the visitor is the one who said it! And he replied that “If his girl friend was here right now she kick her ass” The girl apologize , so did the tenants! but that wasn’t good enough; words were exchange This was what I was told!! The postman thru the first punch , then drop his mail bag and then the man who he punch starting fighting him back. From what I gather when the woman was trying to get his attention she said ” what’s up my “nigger” didn’t know that it would offend him because that’s how the young people greet each other. And I am Black and she didn’t seem racist to me and her kids play with my grandkids everyday!!

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