Ricin letters case remains open after charges dropped against Miss. man

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Associated Press

Posted on April 23, 2013 at 10:32 PM

Updated Wednesday, Apr 24 at 12:30 AM

TUPELO, Miss. (AP) — The case of ricin-laced letters remains open after charges were dropped against an Elvis impersonator from Mississippi who has maintained since his arrest last week that he had nothing to do with the case.

Law enforcement officers, including some in hazmat suits, converged on a home in Tupelo, Miss., Tuesday, but they have not arrested the man who lives there.

Everett Dutschke (DUHST'-kee) tells The Associated Press that the search of his home was the FBI's second in connection to the mailings and the situation is becoming stressful. Dutschke maintains he has no idea how to make ricin and had nothing to do with sending the poisoned letters to President Barack Obama, U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker and a Mississippi judge.

Paul Kevin Curtis, who was released from custody Tuesday, says the same thing. The 45-year-old says he realizes letters he's sent to Wicker in the past claiming to have found black-market body parts while working at a hospital made him an easy target. But Curtis says he respects the president, loves his country and would never "pose a threat" to a government official.

%@AP Links

324-a-13-(J. Everett Dutschke (DUHST'-kee), who's home was searched by law enforcement officials, in interview)-"out somebody else"-J. Everett Dutschke says Paul Kevin Curtis' lawyer has now moved the focus of investigators to him. COURTESY: WTVA-TV ((mandatory on-air credit)) Updated: 04/23/2013-08:33:25 PM ET (23 Apr 2013)

<<CUT *324 (04/23/13)>> 00:13 "out somebody else"

317-a-10-(Paul Kevin Curtis, after charges against him were dropped in connection with ricin-laced letters, at news conference)-"other U.S. official"-Paul Kevin Curtis says the charges against him were way off base. (23 Apr 2013)

<<CUT *317 (04/23/13)>> 00:10 "other U.S. official"

316-w-35-(Ed Donahue, AP correspondent, with Paul Kevin Curtis)--Charges have been dropped against the Mississippi man accused of sending ricin-laced letters to President Obama and others. AP correspondent Ed Donahue has the details. (23 Apr 2013)

<<CUT *316 (04/23/13)>> 00:35

293-a-07-(Paul Kevin Curtis, accused of mailing letters laced with suspected ricin, with reporters)-"to my children"-Paul Kevin Curtis says he very happy charges were dropped against him. (23 Apr 2013)

<<CUT *293 (04/23/13)>> 00:07 "to my children"

294-a-11-(Paul Kevin Curtis, accused of mailing letters laced with suspected ricin, with reporters)-"why I'm there"-Paul Kevin Curtis says he doesn't know anything about ricin and he is glad this is all over. (23 Apr 2013)

<<CUT *294 (04/23/13)>> 00:11 "why I'm there"

295-a-07-(Paul Kevin Curtis, accused of mailing letters laced with suspected ricin, with reporters)-"even eat rice"-Paul Kevin Curtis says he doesn't know why he was suspected of sending letters tainted with ricin. (23 Apr 2013)

<<CUT *295 (04/23/13)>> 00:07 "even eat rice"

APPHOTO MSRS104: Federal authorities wearing hazmat suits walk to the home of Everett Dutschke for additional investigation, Tuesday evening, April 23, 2013 in Tupelo, Miss., in connection with the recent ricin attacks. No charges have been filed against Dutschke and he hasn't been arrested. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis) (23 Apr 2013)

<<APPHOTO MSRS104 (04/23/13)>>

APPHOTO MSOXF102: Paul Kevin Curtis, who had been in custody under suspicion of sending ricin-laced letters to President Barack Obama and others, left, hugs his attorney Christi McCoy during a news conference following his release Tuesday, April 23, 2013 in in Oxford, Miss. The charges were dismissed without prejudice, which means they could be re-instated if prosecutors so choose. (AP Photo/Oxford Eagle, Bruce Newman) MANDATORY CREDIT, MAGS OUT, NO SALES (23 Apr 2013)

<<APPHOTO MSOXF102 (04/23/13)>>

APPHOTO MSTUP201: Everett Dutschke stands in the steet near his home in Tupelo, Miss., and waits for the FBI to arrive and search his home Tuesday April 23, 2013 in connection with the sending of poisoned letters to President Barack Obama and others last week. Paul Kevin Curtis, the man charged with sending the letters, was released from jail Tuesday on bond, while FBI agents returned Dutschke's house where they'd previously searched in connection with the case. (AP Photo/Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal, Thomas Wells) MANDATORY CREDIT (23 Apr 2013)

<<APPHOTO MSTUP201 (04/23/13)>>

APPHOTO MSTUP202: An FBI agent stops homeowner Everett Dutschke from approaching his home Tuesday, April 23, 2013, in Tupelo, Miss., as they search his home in connection with the sending of poisoned letters to President Barack Obama and others last week. Paul Kevin Curtis, the man charged with sending the letters, was released from jail Tuesday on bond, while FBI agents returned Dutschke's house where they'd previously searched in connection with the case. (AP Photo/Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal, Thomas Wells) MANDATORY CREDIT (22 Apr 2013)

<<APPHOTO MSTUP202 (04/22/13)>>

APPHOTO MSRS111: Federal authorities wear hazmat suits as they search the home of Everett Dutschke, Tuesday, April 23, 2013 in Tupelo, Miss., in connection with the recent ricin attacks. No charges have been filed against Dutschke and he hasn't been arrested. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis) (23 Apr 2013)

<<APPHOTO MSRS111 (04/23/13)>>

APPHOTO MSRS103: Federal authorities remove items from the Tupelo, Miss., home of Everett Dutschke, Tuesday, April 23, 2013, in connection with the recent ricin attacks. No charges have been filed against Dutschke and he hasn't been arrested. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis) (23 Apr 2013)

<<APPHOTO MSRS103 (04/23/13)>>

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