Ricin and the Ruined Relationship

ricin letters

There is a suspect in the case of who sent letters laced with ricin to President Obama and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.  A Texas woman said she had found ricin in her refrigerator, and that is was put there by her husband.  He said he was ‘set up,’ and that she is the guilty party.  This is a case of ricin and the ruined relationship.

Shannon Rogers Guess told authorities that her husband had mailed the letters.  Nathaniel Richardson, a U.S. Army veteran, claims she mailed the ricin letters, and she had planned all along to make the claim that he was the guilty party.

The letter sent to Bloomberg had the following message:

“You will have to kill me and my family before you get my guns.  Anyone wants to come to my house will get shot in the face.  The right to bear arms is my constitutional, God-given right and I will exercise that right till the day I die. What’s in this letter is nothing compared to what I’ve got planned for you.”

Guess’ son Brenden, who is 19 years old, said that his mother was paranoid that Richardson was using the poison to slowly kill her.

“She told me she was trying to be as careful as possible,’ said Guess. ‘She didn’t eat unless it was straight from the store to her hand, basically.”

Richardson, 33, was released from custody on Friday.  Authorities said that, although they didn’t have enough evidence to hold and formerly charge him, he continues to be a suspect.

Yesterday, as authorities from the FBI and U.S. Postal Service investigative unit, carefully searched the house, Guess told reporters:  “He’s racist and hates Obama. Everyone knows that.”

When confronted as to why Richardson would say she was the guilty party, she said:  “I didn’t do anything. That’s absolutely not true,” she said.

When asked what kind of husband Nathaniel is, she replied, “Not a good one.”

Guess, 36, is a small-time actress who has played a zombie in “The Walking Dead” TV series.  She is also a civilian employee of the Department of Defense, and works at the Red River Army Depot.

Richardson told the post that she was angry because they had filed for divorce.  “He told them we filed for divorce, but we haven’t yet. But after all this, I will be soon,” said Shannon Rogers Guess.

Richardson is staying at his parent’s house in Maud, Texas.

Nathaniel used to live with his parents, a neighbor said. “They get down back there. I used to hear automatics going off all the time. We’d hear ‘Pop! Pop! Pop!’ They shoot into the woods,” said Ricky Hilton, 54.

A family friend said that Richardson had posted ‘dozens of pictures of guns’ on his Facebook page, but that they have been removed from the site.

The couple’s home is in New Boston, Texas.  The letters to the President and Mayor Bloomberg were postmarked in Shreveport, Louisiana, which is about an hour-and-a-half drive from New Boston.  Sources say that Richardson has ties to Shreveport.

One of the letters “obviously referred to our anti-gun efforts, but there’s 12,000 people that are going to get killed this year with guns and 19,000 that are going to commit suicide with guns, and we’re not going to walk away from those efforts,” said Bloomberg, adding that he didn’t feel threatened.

Ricin is a poison made from the oil of castor beans.  No one was harmed in either instance, but ricin may have ruined an already doomed relationship.

James Turnage

The Guardian Express
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