Ricin Suspect Released (Plus and Entry from the “You Can’t Make this Stuff up” File

Via CNN:  Ricin suspect freed, marshals say:

The Mississippi man accused of sending ricin-tainted letters to President Barack Obama and other officials has been released from federal custody, a spokesman for the U.S. Marshal’s Service said Tuesday.

Then, the next paragraph starts:

Paul Kevin Curtis, an Elvis impersonator from Corinth, Mississippi, was charged with sending a threat to the president last week after letters containing the deadly toxin triggered a security scare in Washington.

First, is that a relevant bit of information?

Second, I find it rather amusing.

FILED UNDER: Crime, Law and the Courts, US Politics, , ,
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. James Joyner says:

    There’s a “Suspicious Minds” joke in there somewhere.

  2. mantis says:

    First, is that a relevant bit of information?

    Sure, it’s pretty standard to note the profession (or lack thereof) of the subject of a news report.

    Second, I find it rather amusing.

    Indeed, Elvis impersonators should never be trusted.

  3. Jeremy says:


  4. Argon says:

    Yeah, even in the most outrageous theater of the bizarre, that second quote just zings. I don’t think there’s ever been a fiction writer who could’ve thought up that sentence.

  5. grumpy realist says:

    Actually, supposedly he was released under bond, so it’s questionable to assume at this point “there’s no “there” there”. It may be more of a case of “this guy is such a doofus he wouldn’t know how to escape if he tried.”

  6. Franklin says:

    @grumpy realist: Hey, my college writing prof told me I couldn’t nest quotation marks! (Clearly she wasn’t a programmer …)

  7. James Joyner says:

    @Franklin: I’ve always used the single quote inside double quote workaround: ” . . . there’s no ‘there’ there.”

  8. grumpy realist says:

    It now looks like the ricin guy–who claimed he was being framed–may be right.

    This is getting weirder and weirder.

  9. bk says:

    Looks like he was “caught in a trap”.

  10. michael reynolds says:


    I say you can, and if you compare what your writing prof makes from putting words on paper and what I make doing the same, I think you’ll agree that you should listen to me.