NEW YORK (PIX11) — Even as the FBI was looking at a “person of interest” in New Boston, Texas — suspected of sending Ricin-tainted letters to Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York and President Obama — the Mayor took to the radio airwaves Friday and quipped, “I face more danger from lightning than anything else, and I’ll go about my business.”
Last Friday, a letter addressed to Bloomberg was opened at the city’s “mail screening” facility on Gold Street in Manhattan and was checked for a suspicious-looking substance. A second lab test revealed the presence of Ricin, a poison that can be deadly if inhaled, touched, or ingested. A similar letter was opened Sunday by the director of a gun control group in Washington, D.C. that Bloomberg co-founded, and a third letter was discovered Wednesday at a White House screening center, addressed to President Obama.
The letter writer — who post-marked the envelopes from Shreveport, Louisiana — wrote pretty much the same text in all the letters.
In Bloomberg’s, the person typed, “You will have to kill me and my family before you get my guns. Anyone wants to come to my house will get shot in the face. The right to bear arms is my constitutional God-given right and I will exercise that right til the day I die.”
Last night, reports surfaced that the wife of a U.S Army veteran living in New Boston, Texas — who’s now a Defense Department employee — noticed suspicious items in her refrigerator and saw that her husband had done a “Google” search on the computer about Ricin. Ricin is contained naturally in castor beans and can be easily bought. The Internet contains instructions on how the poison can be extracted from the beans. Victims exposed to a lethal dose of Ricin can die within 36 hours.
The Mayor said on his weekly, WOR radio show Friday, “I trust the Police Department and I feel perfectly safe.” Earlier, he had noted of his position as Mayor — and outspoken advocate for gun control — “There’s always threats. Unfortunately, that comes with the job.”