No Really. It just wasn’t covered by the big city media because it happened in the “fly-over” part of California. At least three California government facilities received multiple letters postmarked from a country in the former Soviet Union containing white powder. At least one tested positive for Ricin.
I did an Internet search and found little on the attack. Just a few scattered echoes of the same press release reproduced in news outlets on both sides of the Oregon/California border. This is a typical report.
On July 23rd envelopes arrived at Pelican Bay State Prison that, after a screening process, were found to contain a suspicious substance.
The area where the envelopes were opened was quarantined and “a coordinated investigation with local, state and federal law enforcement as well as public health officials was initiated.”
The substance was sent to a lab and was determined to be ricin.
Envelopes containing Ricin arrive at Pelican Bay State Prison
Three people who came into contact with the envelopes were taken to the hospital for medical evaluation and then later released.
Oh, Pelican Bay State Prison in on the north coast of California off highway 101 near Crescent City. Centinela State Prison is just north of the Mexican border in the very southern part of California. I saw no media reports from any southern California media outlets on this incident.
However, the incident did make it into the Wikipedia article on Ricin which can be found here.
Ricinus communis, is a highly potent toxin. A dose of purified ricin powder the size of a few grains of table salt can kill an adult human. The median lethal dose (LD50) of ricin is around 22 micrograms per kilogram of body weight if the exposure is from injection or inhalation (2 milligrams for an average adult).
However, there is more.
In addition to previously published reports, at least one other facility near Ione, California (50 miles from Sacramento) also received suspicious letters with white powder. The letters have been addressed to both prison staff and particular inmates at the prisons. The Department of Corrections has implemented statewide training and special precautions to people interacting with the mail.
Terror attacks in rural places don’t matter. Because this happened in “flyover country” you never heard about it until now.