Archived anthrax coverage

NIH worker accused in Fla. anthrax threat

An employee at the National Institutes of Health was arrested yesterday, accused of making an anthrax threat against an assessor's office in Florida with which she was having a property tax dispute, the FBI's Miami office said.  Read more ...

Questions raised as localities stockpile anthrax antidotes

Fire Lt. Randall Owens keeps one in the locker at his Rockville station and another in the master bathroom of his Frederick County home. His are two of the 7,000 "bio-packs" of anthrax antidotes given to 3,500 Montgomery County firefighters and police officers.  Read more ...

Agents search homes of bioterror expert

WASHINGTON - The mystery of who sent deadly anthrax through the mail in the fall of 2001 took a new turn yesterday when federal investigators searched homes belonging to a doctor who founded an anti-terrorism organization and who once predicted an anthrax attack in the United States.  Read more ...

Closing of lab marks renewed intensity in anthrax probe

FBI anthrax investigators have closed some high-security laboratory suites at the Army's biodefense research center at Fort Detrick, apparently searching for scientific evidence as the third anniversary of the unsolved case approaches.  Read more ...

Judge postpones Hatfill's lawsuit

WASHINGTON - Based in part on secret information provided by the FBI, a federal judge yesterday postponed for six months Dr. Steven J. Hatfill's lawsuit against the government for targeting him in its investigation of the anthrax-laced letters that killed five people in 2001.  Read more ...

Judge doubts Hatfill suit will harm anthrax probe

WASHINGTON - A federal judge said yesterday that he is not convinced that allowing a lawsuit by Dr. Steven J. Hatfill to proceed will endanger the FBI's investigation of the anthrax letters that killed five people in 2001.  Read more ...

Hatfill files suit to stop surveillance

WASHINGTON - Fighting back after more than a year as a public target of the FBI's anthrax investigation, Dr. Steven J. Hatfill filed a federal lawsuit yesterday accusing Attorney General John Ashcroft and other officials of harassing him with relentless surveillance, wrecking his reputation and preventing him from finding work to cover up their failure to find the real bioterrorist behind the 2001 attacks.  Read more ...

FBI might drain Md. pond as part of its anthrax probe

The FBI might drain a pond in the woods near Frederick in hopes of finding physical evidence to help identify the person who mailed anthrax-laced letters that killed five people and sickened at least 17 others in 2001, Frederick Mayor Jennifer P. Dougherty said last night.  Read more ...

More anthrax suits likely against Postal Service

A lawsuit filed this week on behalf of Leroy "Rich" Richmond, a Virginia postal worker who contracted inhalation anthrax while working at Washington's central postal plant in 2001, might be the first of several such suits brought by anthrax survivors, his attorney said yesterday.  Read more ...

Cleanup of anthrax will cost hundreds of millions of dollars

Cleaning up the invisible trail of biological poison left by the anthrax letters mailed last year will cost hundreds of millions of dollars by the time the decontamination effort is complete in 2004 or later, government officials say.  Read more ...

FBI's use of bloodhounds in anthrax probe disputed

Three keen-nosed bloodhounds named Lucy, Knight and TinkerBelle, flown in by the FBI from Southern California late last summer to help with the anthrax investigation, are a major reason for agents' focus on former Army bioterrorism expert Dr. Steven J. Hatfill, according to sources with knowledge of the case.  Read more ...

Former Army scientist forged Ph.D. certificate, school says

When recent reports in The Sun and other publications revealed that former Army bioweapons scientist Dr. Steven J. Hatfill had claimed a Ph.D. he had not received, he offered an explanation.  Read more ...

A year later, clues on anthrax still few

It began with an ugly red bump on the middle finger of Johanna Huden's right hand. Huden, an editorial assistant for the New York Post, thought it was an insect bite.  Read more ...

Iraq got seeds for bioweapons from U.S.

WASHINGTON - Iraq's bioweapons program that President Bush wants to eradicate got its start with help from the United States two decades ago, according to government records getting new scrutiny in light of the discussion of war against Iraq.  Read more ...

Scientist's apartment searched a third time

FBI agents investigating last year's deadly anthrax mailings conducted a third search yesterday of the former apartment of Dr. Steven J. Hatfill in Frederick, according to a government source.  Read more ...

Anthrax researcher is fired from job at LSU

Dr. Steven J. Hatfill, who says the federal government has ruined his life by linking him to the anthrax investigation, was fired yesterday from his job as a bioterrorism trainer at Louisiana State University.  Read more ...

Anthrax figure steps up offense

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - Stepping up his counteroffensive against FBI anthrax investigators who have targeted him, Dr. Steven J. Hatfill released documents yesterday showing that he worked long hours in Virginia the days the contaminated letters were mailed in New Jersey last fall.  Read more ...

The Trials of a Citizen Soldier

Illness lingers, loyalty wanes

Dressed in khakis and a dusty green canvas jacket, Rich Richmond enters the medical center with an easy gait and bright countenance, like a country gentleman returning from a brisk jaunt in a wintry woods. Certainly no one in the waiting room would suspect that just four months earlier this man nearly became a fatal victim in Washington's anthrax attacks.  Read more ...

Postal Service says it acted properly

The United States Postal Service says it acted appropriately in dealing with the anthrax contamination incident that left Leroy "Rich" Richmond debilitated and killed two of his colleagues last October.  Read more ...

FBI defends anthrax inquiry

The FBI denied yesterday that anthrax investigators have smeared a former Army bioterrorism expert with leaks to the news media but said it would look into some allegations of misconduct made by Dr. Steven J. Hatfill.  Read more ...

Scientist says he's anthrax 'fall guy'

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - Calling himself a "fall guy" in the anthrax investigation, Dr. Steven J. Hatfill vehemently denied yesterday he had anything to do with the mail attacks and accused the FBI and the news media of a campaign of "character assassination" that he said has severely damaged his career.  Read more ...

Scientist theorized anthrax mail attack

Dr. Steven J. Hatfill, the former Fort Detrick biodefense researcher whose Frederick apartment was searched Tuesday by the FBI, commissioned a 1999 study that described a fictional terrorist attack in which an envelope containing weapons-grade anthrax is opened in an office.  Read more ...

Frederick scientist's home searched in anthrax probe

The FBI searched the apartment yesterday of a biological weapons scientist in Frederick as part of the continuing investigation into the mailing of anthrax-laced letters that killed five people last fall.  Read more ...

Hill workers feel irritated by irradiated envelopes

WASHINGTON - Mail delivery in Sen. Patrick J. Leahy's office goes like this: Aides to the Vermont Democrat open the windows, slip on rubber gloves, sift through letters and then, in the most disquieting part of the daily ritual, start worrying about feeling sick.  Read more ...

Army confirms making anthrax in recent years

The U.S. Army's Dugway Proving Ground confirmed last night that it has produced dry anthrax powder in recent years but said the anthrax has been "well-protected" and is all accounted for.  Read more ...

No sign of more resistant anthrax

U.S. health officials say it was probably Kathy Nguyen's delay in seeking treatment - and not any new, more antibiotic-resistant strain of anthrax - that prevented doctors from saving the New York hospital worker's life.  Read more ...

2 cases challenge beliefs on who may get anthrax

Federal health officials said yesterday that they are investigating the possibility of the anthrax threat spreading to homes, because of disturbing questions raised by infections in a New York hospital worker and a New Jersey accountant.  Read more ...

Anthrax discovered at Md. site

Anthrax spores have been found at a postal facility in Landover that handles mail for the Justice Department, a department spokeswoman said last night.  Read more ...

Officials widen hunt for anthrax

Investigators offered new details about the anthrax used in the deadly mail attacks yesterday, as the bacteria sickened a State Department mail worker and federal officials widened the hunt for contamination to hundreds of mailrooms and post offices along the East Coast.  Read more ...

'No guarantees' that mail is safe, postmaster says

Trying to reassure postal workers and an anxious public, the postmaster general moved to shore up the U.S. postal system against biological attack -- even suggesting that people should wash their hands after touching their mail.  Read more ...

4 new cases of anthrax in Md., N.J.

The anthrax fright continued to spread yesterday as four new suspected cases surfaced among postal workers in Maryland and New Jersey, and spores were found at two mail-handling facilities in Washington - including one that screens letters addressed to the White House.  Read more ...

2 mail workers die, 2 ill

The capital region's bioterrorism crisis deepened yesterday after two employees at Washington's primary mail-handling facility died of suspected inhalation anthrax, and two others were seriously ill with the same illness.  Read more ...

Postal clerk ninth victim of anthrax

A postal clerk who sorted mail in the District of Columbia and Maryland is in serious condition with inhalation anthrax, prompting postal officials to evacuate two distribution centers yesterday and test about 2,250 workers for the disease.  Read more ...

Police say letter to New York Post is anthrax-laced

A letter mailed to the New York Post has tested positive for anthrax and is similar to anthrax-laced letters sent to NBC news anchor Tom Brokaw and Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, police said late yesterday.  Read more ...

Postal route in N.J. tracked

TRENTON, N.J. - Federal investigators descended on suburban Ewing Township yesterday, tracking a postal carrier's route where at least one of the anthrax-tainted letters that have rattled the nation in recent weeks might have been mailed.  Read more ...

Anthrax reward: $1 million

WASHINGTON - The FBI and the U.S. Postal Service offered rewards yesterday of up to $1 million for information leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever sent anthrax-tainted letters to NBC in New York and to Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle in Washington.  Read more ...

An anthrax glossary

Exposure: Anthrax spores have been found in the nose or on the skin. It does not mean that the spores have entered the lungs or bloodstream or produced an illness.  Read more ...

Anthrax alert shuts House

WASHINGTON - Investigators said that they have "substantive leads" about the origins of the anthrax that was mailed to Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle and triggered a partial shutdown yesterday on Capitol Hill.  Read more ...

A lethal mastery of some science

To turn anthrax from an animal disease into a bioterror weapon capable of killing large numbers of people is a demanding scientific task that requires some knowledge of microbiology and lab equipment, according to experts and scientific reports.  Read more ...

Anthrax risk is seen as 'extraordinarily low'

Most Marylanders have little, if any, chance of being exposed to anthrax, state and private health officials said yesterday.  Read more ...

Facing anthrax scare with rational caution

AMERICANS should react to the possibility of terrorism by anthrax spore as they have to such dangers as cancer from the sun and death on the highways - by proceeding with caution, even extreme caution, but not with panic.  Read more ...

More anthrax cases found

Two suspicious letters - one delivered in New York and another in Nevada - have been found to contain anthrax, while five more employees of a Florida tabloid publisher have tested positive for exposure to the rare and deadly bacteria, officials announced yesterday.  Read more ...

Shedding some light on anthrax

Anthrax has been identified as a disease in animals and humans for centuries, and its use as a biological weapon has been studied for 80 years. Still, most people know little about it.  Read more ...

Woman in N.Y. 4th anthrax case

An NBC News employee in New York became yesterday the fourth American to be discovered with a rare anthrax bacterium, raising fears that media companies may have been targeted for a biological attack through the mail.  Read more ...

Anthrax found in third worker at paper in Fla.

BOCA RATON, Fla. - A third employee of a tabloid newspaper was exposed to anthrax, federal officials said last night, prompting them to launch a criminal investigation into how the bacteria were spread, by whom and why.  Read more ...

Hopkins doctor takes on bioterrorism

WASHINGTON - The Johns Hopkins doctor who decades ago led the worldwide effort to wipe out smallpox is wasting no time trying to inoculate the nation against a bioterrorist attack.  Read more ...

Anthrax probe widens as second case discovered

Federal officials widened their probe yesterday into the death of a Florida man from anthrax, acknowledging that they are considering bioterrorism after anthrax spores were found on the victim's computer keyboard and in a colleague.  Read more ...

Fla. man dies of anthrax; officials seek its source

LANTANA, Fla. - A 63-year-old Florida man died of the inhaled form of anthrax yesterday in the first such death in the United States in 25 years.  Read more ...

Departures from military laid to fear of vaccine

WASHINGTON - Countering military assertions that refusals to take the anthrax vaccine are having little impact, a congressional study finds it is the leading cause mentioned by pilots and aircrew members for leaving National Guard and reserve units.  Read more ...

Anthrax vaccine contributes to death of Michigan worker

LANSING, Mich. - A man whose job required him to take a widely used anthrax vaccine died partly because of an "inflammatory response" to the vaccine, according to autopsy results.  Read more ...

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