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Second Parking Lot Attendant Pleads Guilty to Stealing $400,000 in Parking Fees at Smithsonian

Freweyni Mebrahtu faces up to 10 years in prison; sentencing in January.

Freweyni Mebrahtu, 45, of Sterling, pled guilty Thursday to belonging to the Smithsonian Institution’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly.

Mebrahtu was one of three parking attendants employed by Parking Management, Inc. who were arrested and charged with embezzlement and theft. 

Agents of the Smithsonian Office of Inspector General and FBI agents arrested Mebrahtu Aug. 4. Mebrahtu will be sentenced Jan. 18 and faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. From March 2009 to July 2012, Mebrahtu was a full-time employee of Parking Management, Inc. (“PMI”) who worked as a booth attendant at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center parking lot. 

The Udvar-Hazy Center is the annex facility of the National Air and Space Museum and is home to the Space Shuttle Discovery and other historic aircraft.  The Air and Space Museum and Udvar-Hazy Center display the largest collection of aircraft and spacecraft in the world. PMI, under contract with the Smithsonian, has managed and operated the Udvar-Hazy Center’s 2,000-vehicle parking lot since March 2009.

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Smithsonian Parking Attendant Pleads Guilty to Stealing Lot Fees

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