Ricin Case Suspect Found

Adaptation of photograph by Museumdetoulouse, available under a Creative Commons

Attribution license. Copyright © 2007 Museumdetoulouse.

Adaptation of photograph by Museumdetoulouse, available under a Creative Commons Attribution license. Copyright © 2007 Museumdetoulouse.

Carter Robinson, Associate Editor- Campus Life

James Dutschke, a self-proclaimed politician from Mississippi, was arrested on Saturday, April 27, for allegedly sending letters containing Ricin, a highly poisonous substance that is made from the castor bean plant. Letters containing the deadly poison were sent to President Obama, Mississippi Senator Roger Wicker, and Judge Sadie Holland. The letters were intercepted before arriving to their intended recipients.

Originally, Paul Curtis, a self-promoted Republican activist, was the number one suspect. This was due to the fact that each letter was signed “I am KC and I approve this message,” a signature saying by Curtis. After police searched his house, they found no evidence to hold him in jail or even to take him to court, and he was released. Curtis was the one who tipped authorities off about Dutschke. He told police about their online feud, and how Dutschke would love to put the blame on Curtis.

Dutschke was arrested on Saturday and his house was searched for evidence. The biggest tie between Dutschke and the letters is that he knows two out of the three recipients. Dutschke lost the position of State Representative to Steve Holland, which is why Sadie Holland, Steve Holland’s mother, may have received a letter. Dutschke also admitted that he has met Wicker before.

Dutschke has been previously been charged with child molestation accounts involving three girls under the age of 16. He appeared in court earlier this month to plead not guilty and was released. If the authorities can find clear evidence against Dutschke and are able to convict him, he could face life in prison and a $250,000 fine.