Nation/World

Prisoner gets life in threat against Bushes

PANAMA CITY, Fla. – A state prison inmate has received a federal life sentence for threatening President Bush, his brother Gov. Jeb Bush and government employees with anthrax in a letter mailed to a courthouse. The letter contained body powder.

Roger V. Evans, 51, also was ordered to undergo mental evaluation.

Employees at the federal courthouse in Pensacola were held in isolation for about 10 hours after Evans’ letter arrived at the clerk’s office in April 2004. Initial testing erroneously indicated the substance may have been ricin, a poison even more deadly than anthrax.

Evans pleaded guilty in December to charges of mailing threatening communications, assaulting, resisting or impeding federal officers, and threatening to use a weapon of mass destruction against federal property.

He is only the second person charged with the latter crime, officials said. The first was Timothy McVeigh, who in 1995 blew up the federal building in Oklahoma City, killing 168 people.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Swaim told the judge Evans compounded his crime by sending the prosecutor a letter threatening him with botulism.

Evans’ lawyer removed himself from the case before the sentencing because he, too, had received a letter from his client threatening him and his family.

Evans already was serving a 50-year state sentence for robbery, armed robbery and escape.



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