A CROSS-DRESSING postie hid hundreds of parcels at home because stone-throwing yobs were making his rounds a misery.
Married dad-of-one Michael Pearson was hounded by teenage gangs, who hurled abuse as he tried to deliver mail.
The 43-year-old, who attended Dewsbury Magistrates' Court wearing a dress, high heels and matching pink lipstick and nail varnish, admitted hoarding 234 packages and dumping 29 others in a supermarket car park.
The court heard the trusted postman had tried to shorten his round to "reduce the risk of confrontation with the youths".
Pearson, who lives with his wife, Amanda, in Cleckheaton, was given a four-month suspended jail term and ordered to carry out 150 hours' unpaid work.
He must also pay £300 toward the cost of the Royal Mail investigation.
Daniel Metcalf, defending, urged magistrates not to impose a curfew, adding: "Mr Pearson's wife is not taking the current issues in relation to his sexuality too well."
Suspicious officials searched his home in September after spotting him peeling address labels off packaging in a pub car park and dumping the parcels in a bin at a Tesco supermarket.
He admitted delaying 264 postal packages and criminal damage at an earlier hearing.
Mr Metcalf told magistrates: "He tried to shorten his rounds by taking out items of junk mail. There was no financial gain, he was simply trying to reduce the risk of confrontation with these youths."
Apologetic Michael Pearson, who calls himself Michelle when he dresses as a woman, said after the case that he tried to hide his alter ego from his workmates.
But young thugs noticed he had shiny long hair and nice shaped eyebrows, so they abused him for it.
Michael, who now does odd jobs after being forced to resign from the Royal Mail, said: "I did not do anything maliciously. My life was being made hell and I could not cope with it.
"I believe the attacks made me slide into a kind of depression."
Speaking from his two-bedroom terraced home in Cleckheaton that he shares with his wife Amanda, 41, and son Jamie, six, he said he had always felt that he was different and started wearing his mother's underwear from the age of four.
Housewife Amanda is still finding it difficult with the fact that he is on the NHS waiting list for a sex change. For the moment she remains by his side.
A Royal Mail spokesman said: "We have a zero tolerance approach to any dishonesty and that stance is shared by the overwhelming majority of postmen and women, who are honest and hardworking and who do all they can to protect the mail and deliver it safely.
"We will always seek to prosecute the tiny minority of people who abuse their position of trust."