Subsequent test show subtance at UT not Ricin

Austin American-Statesman:

A whitish-brown powder found in a University of Texas dormitory may not be ricin after all, officials said Saturday.

Mike Elliott, senior district commander for Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services, said that although one test returned a positive result for the potentially deadly poison, subsequent tests have been negative.

"I'm pretty confident it's not ricin," Elliott said Saturday.

Investigators said a female student from Moore-Hill dormitory discovered the powder after opening a roll of quarters in her dorm room to do laundry. UT officials said the roll was one of several given to her by her parents sometime in the fall.

Both the student who opened the quarters and her roommate were evaluated for ricin exposure, and university officials said neither showed symptoms, which typically include breathing difficulty, cough, fever, nausea and tightness in the chest.


The FBI is investigating the matter. Rene Salinas, with the FBI office in San Antonio, said specialists in weapons of mass destruction were flying to San Antonio from Virginia to pick up samples and take them to a government facility for further tests.

"The final tests should give us a definitive answer (on whether the substance is indeed ricin)," Salinas said.


It looks like the first test gave a false positive. We can hope so anyway.


  1. feed it to a friggen mouse!

    If it dies very soon, "might be ricin" If the mouse makes a cake? might not be ricin.

    The flags up way to fast with these stories.


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