Local leaders help FBI in toxic letter investigation - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Local leaders help FBI in toxic letter investigation

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Mayor A C Wharton Mayor A C Wharton

(WMC-TV) - Two letters containing a deadly poison, one postmarked to the president and another postmarked to a Mississippi senator, were postmarked from Memphis. Many people are now asking the question: how safe is our mail?

If letters with ricin went through our mail system, could the poison be on your letters?

Local leaders are putting resources toward helping the FBI. They are also working to protect the public and local lawmakers.

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton condemned the ricin letters.

"I regret that the name Memphis has been even mentioned at all," he said.

Wharton points out that mail comes to Memphis in bulk from across the Mid-South, and whether it originated in Memphis, the mail is still postmarked from Memphis.

"It's like any other crime. You have signatories to every crime," said Office of Preparedness Director Bob Nations.

Office of Preparedness Director Bob Nations says every criminal leaves a trail. He has faith that the FBI will prevail.

"I feel certain that with time they will identify the individual or individuals involved," said Nations.

He urges citizens to alert law enforcement if you see something out of place and be aware of your surroundings.

"We don't want to be intimidated to the point that we change our lifestyle, but what we so want to so is be prepared," he added.

"I regret that it happened. I'm just glad out law enforcement and postal authorities were on top of the situation and no one's been harmed by it this far," said Mayor Wharton.

City of Memphis staff will have police training on handling mail in the coming days.

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