Ricin Letter Suspect Released, Charges Dismissed

Federal Prosecutors have dismissed the charges against the man arrested last week for allegedly sending ricin-laced letters to a Senator and the President:

WASHINGTON — Federal officials have dismissed charges against Paul Kevin Curtis, a Mississippi-based Elvis impersonator originally charged in connection with mailing ricin to lawmakers, because an “ongoing investigation has revealed new information,” a federal official said in a court filing late Tuesday.

Curtis was released from jail earlier Tuesday. His attorney has scheduled a press conference for Tuesday evening.

Meanwhile, there are reports that authorities are searching the home of another Mississippi man who may have framed Curtis:

A former Republican candidate for Mississippi’s House of Representatives named J. Everett Dutschke expressed disbelief and dismay Tuesday shortly after a man he was accused of framing for mailing letters that tested positive for the poison ricin to President Barack Obama and other officials was released from jail. Dutschke has not been charged in the ricin case and has denied any involvement.

The FBI originally focused on Paul Kevin Curtis, a Mississippi Elvis impersonator, due to his initials and similar language to his many online writings that appeared in the poisoned letters. Curtis was released from jail on bond Tuesday and his attorneys have a joint press conference with federal officials scheduled for 5 p.m. Central time.

On Monday, Curtis’ lawyer, Christi McCoy, said she believed Dutschke could have been responsible for mailing the letters noting he had argued with Curtis over email.

Dutschke’s house has reportedly been searched by the FBI. So, stay tuned.

FILED UNDER: Crime, Law and the Courts, , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Franklin says:

    Ooh, this is getting even better!

  2. legion says:

    @Franklin: Seriously – pass the popcorn!