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Anthrax report casts doubt on scientific evidence in FBI case against Bruce Ivins
washingtonpost ^ | February 15, 2011

Posted on 02/15/2011 9:20:12 AM PST by Justice Department

A panel of prominent scientists is casting new doubt on scientific evidence that was a key part of the FBI's case against Bruce E. Ivins, the deceased Army scientist accused of carrying out the deadly 2001 anthrax attacks.

The National Research Council, in a report issued Tuesday, questioned the link between a flask of anthrax bacteria in Ivins's lab at Fort Detrick, Md., and the anthrax-infested letters that killed five people and sickened 17 others.

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...


TOPICS: Anthrax Scare; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: anthrax; bruceivins

1 posted on 02/15/2011 9:20:16 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: Justice Department

Ivins was the perfect defendant from a prosecutor’s point of view.


2 posted on 02/15/2011 9:22:52 AM PST by cripplecreek (Remember the River Raisin! (look it up))
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To: Justice Department

DHS is mad at the FBI. Look for more alphabet soup wars in the press.


3 posted on 02/15/2011 9:22:58 AM PST by blackdog
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To: Justice Department
Who would have thunk...No way were they going to say Iraq and a Muslim American was involved.

Many years ago, I visited DC. There was a DC cop there. An Embassy had just been robbed and DC Police were told to bug out.

The cop said "The FBI probably spends more time shredding than they actually spend on solving a case."

4 posted on 02/15/2011 9:33:53 AM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: Justice Department
Who would have thunk...No way were they going to say Iraq and a Muslim American was involved.

Many years ago, I visited DC and met a DC cop at a bar. An Embassy had just been robbed and DC Police were told to bug out.

The cop said "The FBI probably spends more time shredding than they actually spend on solving a case."

5 posted on 02/15/2011 9:34:31 AM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: Justice Department
Luckily they drove him to suicide, so he won't be suing.
6 posted on 02/15/2011 9:38:59 AM PST by E. Pluribus Unum ("If they bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun." -- Barry Soetoro, June 11, 2008)
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To: Sacajaweau

“”The FBI probably spends more time shredding than they actually spend on solving a case.”

Like the evidence from OKC< if it didn’t fit the prosecution case , it was gone.

Apparently nobody saw anything at Geary Lake.


7 posted on 02/15/2011 9:40:45 AM PST by DBrow
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To: Sacajaweau

No lake too large to drain..........


8 posted on 02/15/2011 9:41:15 AM PST by blackdog
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To: cripplecreek

“This shows what we’ve been saying all along: that it was all supposition based on conjecture based on guesswork, without any proof whatsoever,’’ said Paul Kemp, a lawyer who represented Ivins in negotiations with federal prosecutors who were preparing to charge him before his death. Kemp called for congressional hearings into the investigation.”


9 posted on 02/15/2011 9:47:21 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: cripplecreek

“This shows what we’ve been saying all along: that it was all supposition based on conjecture based on guesswork, without any proof whatsoever,’’ said Paul Kemp, a lawyer who represented Ivins in negotiations with federal prosecutors who were preparing to charge him before his death. Kemp called for congressional hearings into the investigation.”


10 posted on 02/15/2011 9:47:21 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: E. Pluribus Unum
Luckily they drove him to suicide, so he won't be suing.

Could be a case like that of the Atlanta Olympic bombing where Janet Reno's FBI falsely fingered the completely innocent Richard A. Jewell who died at 44.

11 posted on 02/15/2011 9:54:03 AM PST by newzjunkey
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To: E. Pluribus Unum

FBI Faulted For Overstating Science In Anthrax Case

“A group of independent scientists convened by the National Academies of Sciences has concluded in a report released Tuesday that scientific evidence alone is not enough to prove that Bruce Ivins was the perpetrator of the anthrax attacks that killed five people in 2001.”


12 posted on 02/15/2011 9:59:32 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: Justice Department

Anthrax letters: Was Bruce Ivins hounded to death?
Published: April 22, 2010

Read more: http://www.upi.com/Top_News/Analysis/Outside-View/2010/04/22/Outside-View-Anthrax-letters-Was-Bruce-Ivins-hounded-to-death/UPI-33341271930820/#ixzz1E3IsLorg

FBI behind the anthrax curve
Published: March. 13, 2004

Read more: http://www.upi.com/Business_News/Security-Industry/2004/03/13/Outside-View-FBI-behind-the-anthrax-curve/UPI-75081079206740/#ixzz1E3J2hkpt


13 posted on 02/15/2011 10:14:03 AM PST by Ordinary_American
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To: Ordinary_American

Public Briefing of National Research Council Review of Science in FBI’s Anthrax Case

http://www.tvworldwide.com/events/nationalacadamies/110215/default.cfm?id=13230&type=flv&test=0&live=0


14 posted on 02/15/2011 10:26:43 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: Battle Axe; EdLake

Ping


15 posted on 02/15/2011 12:36:04 PM PST by Justice Department
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To: muawiyah

ping


16 posted on 02/15/2011 7:06:39 PM PST by Battle Axe (Repent, for the coming of the Lord is neigh.)
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To: Justice Department
Fundamentally scientific testing demonstrated that MORE THAN ONE KIND OF ANTHRAX WAS USED.

It is impossible to demonstrate that it all came out of one flask.

The case isn't over and the Islamofascists still have the stuff on hand.

17 posted on 02/15/2011 7:24:37 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: newzjunkey

Richard Jewell a former security guard who was erroneously linked to the 1996 Olympic bombing, died Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2007

Steven Hatfill - the FBI designated Hatfill as a "person of interest" in its anthrax letters probe. During their investigation, feds tailed him 24 hours a day, leaked his name to the media, and an FBI automobile accidentally ran over his foot. Hatfill later filed a lawsuit against John Ashcroft and the New York Times. The suit against the Times was dismissed, and the federal government settled with Hatfill by paying him $5.8 million in June 2008.


18 posted on 02/16/2011 6:48:22 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: Justice Department
According to Scott Shane in The New York Times:

"Nothing in the academy report directly refutes the conclusion of what was by most estimates the most expensive and manpower-intensive criminal investigation in American history."

The panel did not totally disagree with any FBI findings, they just stated that the findings could not be scientifically conclusive because there was too much random chance involved. There was a possibility that the four mutations could have spontaneously appeared somewhere else, somewhere that the FBI knew nothing about. And they would not speculate on what the odds of such a happening were.

The panel didn't dispute that flask RMR-1029 was the parent of the attack spores, they said the FBI "overstated" their finding that flask RMR-1029 was the parent of the attack anthrax spores. The panel just said it couldn't be 100% scientifically proven.

They didn't look at any of the police work which determined Bruce Ivins to be the killer. They could only say that the science couldn't conclusively state anything.

It's scientists being scientists. If something cannot be conclusively proven, then it cannot be conclusively proven, even though the odds might be a quadrillion to one.

Several people in the audience asked the panel to make their findings clear to the public by using statistics or by giving the odds of some alternative explanation being correct, but the scientists just said they weren't statisticians, so that wasn't their job.

Ed at www.anthraxinvestigation.com

19 posted on 02/16/2011 6:49:55 AM PST by EdLake
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To: EdLake
Expert Panel Is Critical of F.B.I. Work in Investigating Anthrax Letters

By SCOTT SHANE

Published: February 15, 2011

WASHINGTON — A review of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s scientific work on the investigation of the anthrax letters of 2001 concludes that the bureau overstated the strength of genetic analysis linking the mailed anthrax to a supply kept by Bruce E. Ivins, the Army microbiologist whom the investigators blamed for the attacks...

20 posted on 02/16/2011 7:04:53 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: muawiyah; EdLake

"The FBI said Berry's homes and the summer house of his parents were searched by FBI agents investigating the 2001 anthrax attacks that killed five people and sickened 17 others."


21 posted on 02/16/2011 7:16:45 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: EdLake
Ed, if the FBI had followed my clue that I provided them in 2001 they would have already been in Ivins house checking his belongings and his clothing, and every element of his lab ~ right about when this happened.

They IGNORED MY CLUE.

That doesn't mean they shouldn't pay me the REWARD MONEY.

I'm waiting for them to contact me ~ but apparently they are not at all confident of their final decision.

22 posted on 02/16/2011 7:27:41 AM PST by muawiyah
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To: Justice Department
"the bureau overstated the strength of genetic analysis linking the mailed anthrax to a supply kept by Bruce E. Ivins"

Yeah, the FBI said it was "definite" and they should have said it was "nearly definite."

The FBI didn't calculate the ODDS that all four mutations could have spontaneously appeared somewhere else. They just determined that the odds were extremely tiny.

To scientists, that's not good enough. They think like True Believers and Conspiracy theorists: If it isn't an absolute certainty, then anything is possible.

That may be true, but it is of no help in determining what actually happened.

Ed at www.anthraxinvestigation.com

23 posted on 02/16/2011 8:25:47 AM PST by EdLake
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To: Justice Department

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/2133539/posts

Ivins kept the one-liter flask of RMR-1029, but some 300 people within the Institute also had access to the flask, according to those familiar with operations there. Before 1999, the preparation was stored in a separate containment area, about 100 yards from the main building. At that time, “access was more vague, because the flask wasn’t under Ivins’ direct custodial control,” Andrews says.

Ivins also shared samples of RMR-1029 with researchers at other facilities.

“Another lab might take a couple of milliliters of that spore preparation and create a daughter preparation,” Andrews says. “How many [samples] Ivins gave out I have no idea, but he did it through official channels, and there is a chain of custody records that indicates which labs got RMR-1029 and how much of the material they got.”

It was those “daughter preps” that ultimately led Fraser-Liggett to Ivins’ flask. Her team at the Institute for Genomic Research began DNA sequencing of the spores in the four anthrax-loaded letters recovered after the 2001 attacks. The team spent two years analyzing 20 different samples of B. anthracis to create a group of tests capable of genetically fingering the distinctive variety of anthrax found in the letters.

They screened nearly 1,000 samples of B. anthracis collected from labs around the world. “The results identified only eight samples that contained all four of the genetic mutations,” she says. “Each of those could be traced back to this one flask at USARMRIID-RMR-1029.”

“I have complete confidence in the accuracy of our data,” Fraser-Liggett says, but she concedes it fails to prove Ivins is guilty.


24 posted on 02/16/2011 8:30:57 AM PST by smokingfrog ( BORN free - taxed to DEATH (and beyond) ...)
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To: muawiyah
"That doesn't mean they shouldn't pay me the REWARD MONEY"

The reward was for "information leading to the arrest and conviction" of the anthrax mailer.

A "clue" is unlikely to fit that requirement unless it's a "smoking gun" clue, like movies of Ivins mailing the letters.

And, technically, since Ivins was never convicted, there can be no reward - even if you had movies of him mailing the letters. But, some lawyer might take your case on a contingency basis.

Ed at www.anthraxinvestigation.com

25 posted on 02/16/2011 8:33:09 AM PST by EdLake
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To: muawiyah

CLUE?


26 posted on 02/16/2011 8:40:37 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: smokingfrog

http://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/02/04/according-to-former-co-worker-of-ivins-and-former-usamriid-microbacteriologist-henry-heine-the-science-doesnt-seem-to-support-ivins-guilt/comment-page-1/#comment-10435


27 posted on 02/16/2011 8:53:57 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: Justice Department
What I had in hand was a remarkably simple clue ~ I identified the specific document from which the addresses on the letters was taken. Another gentleman identified the type of data processing software used to SET the address in that format.

So, I contacted FBI through the internet website set up to collect such information AND I talked to several different Postal Inspectors about the matter, and included written material.

What that meant was the individual who addressed the anthrax letters in a rather peculiar format actually looked at that publication as his guide.

Believe it or not the three addresses recovered were in an absolutely unique structure ~ so once you find the publication (not sold on news stands) you simply go to the publisher and find the distribution list.

You then match that distribution list against persons with some professional relationship with anthrax (production or research) and you know where to start.

FBI's approach took them an additional 7 years to get to Dr. Ivins. My clue, if even looked at, would have cut that 7 years out of the process to get them to the same dead end, but 7 years earlier!

At that time witnesses memories would have been fresher, custody records more complete, casual conversations with other potential targets still remembered, etc.

Since I am sure the FBI has not yet gotten the perp I can hold out for getting the reward once they make an arrest. There are at least 2 other FREEPERS who have targeted others who may well have had access to the exact same anthrax source when it had the 4 mutations they believed they found.

I don't believe FBI thinks they've solved the case.

28 posted on 02/16/2011 10:44:56 AM PST by muawiyah
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To: muawiyah; EdLake
“I don't believe FBI thinks they've solved the case. “

I certainly wouldn't be writing any book about how Ivins is the definitive culprit.

29 posted on 02/16/2011 11:53:27 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: muawiyah; EdLake
“I don't believe FBI thinks they've solved the case. “

I certainly wouldn't be writing any book about how Ivins is the definitive culprit.

30 posted on 02/16/2011 11:53:27 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: Justice Department
"I certainly wouldn't be writing any book about how Ivins is the definitive culprit."

You might not, but I certainly would.

In June of 2000, over a year before the anthrax attacks, Ivins planned to murder a former co-worker just because she went back to medical school. He couldn't cope with her leaving his lab.

That's the kind of nut that Ivins was. The anthrax attacks were just part of a long series of criminal acts - including burglaries and harassment of other women he knew.

And he did all of his crimes while working for the government.

Ed at www.anthraxinvestigation.com

31 posted on 02/16/2011 12:50:57 PM PST by EdLake
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To: EdLake

Following National Academy Report, Holt Calls for Congressional Anthrax Commission
Tuesday, 15 February 2011 16:44
“NAS Report Makes Clear There Are Still Questions to be Answered and Still Lessons to be Learned”

(Washington, D.C.) – Rep. Rush Holt (NJ-12) today is reintroducing the Anthrax Attacks Investigation Act, legislation that would establish a Congressional commission to investigate the 2001 anthrax attacks and the federal government’s response to and investigation of the attacks. Holt is introducing the bill on the same day that the National Academy of Sciences issued its report raising questions about the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) scientific conclusions in the “Amerithrax” case. He first introduced the legislation in September 2008.

“The NAS report makes clear there are still questions to be answered and still lessons to be learned about the FBI’s investigation into the attacks,” Holt said. “It would take a credulous person to believe the circumstantial evidence that the FBI used to draw its conclusions with such certainty. The FBI has not proven to me that this is an open and shut case. We still badly need a 9/11-style commission to determine how the attacks happened and whether we learned the lessons to prepare for another attack.”

The 11-member bipartisan commission would investigate the attacks, assess the federal government’s response to and investigation of the attacks, and make recommendations to the President and Congress on how the country can best prevent or respond to a future bioterror attack. Just as the 9/11 Commission looked not only at the attacks of that morning, but also at recommended changes in the structure of government agencies, screening methods, and Congressional oversight, an anthrax commission would look not only at the attacks, but also measures for prevention, detection, and investigation of any future bio-terrorism.
The commission would consider scientific, technical evidence as well as classified evidence the NAS did not examine.

The 2001 attacks evidently originated from a postal box in Holt’s Central New Jersey congressional district, disrupting the lives and livelihoods of many of his constituents. Holt has consistently raised questions about the federal investigation into the attacks.

“Too many questions remain about the anthrax attacks and the government’s bungled response to the attacks,” Holt said. “A high level commission, like the 9/11 Commission, would be a start-to-finish examination of the many outstanding questions, and it would help American families know that the government is prepared to protect them and their children from future bioterrorism attacks.”


32 posted on 02/17/2011 4:43:32 PM PST by Justice Department
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To: EdLake

Following National Academy Report, Holt Calls for Congressional Anthrax Commission
Tuesday, 15 February 2011 16:44
“NAS Report Makes Clear There Are Still Questions to be Answered and Still Lessons to be Learned”

(Washington, D.C.) – Rep. Rush Holt (NJ-12) today is reintroducing the Anthrax Attacks Investigation Act, legislation that would establish a Congressional commission to investigate the 2001 anthrax attacks and the federal government’s response to and investigation of the attacks. Holt is introducing the bill on the same day that the National Academy of Sciences issued its report raising questions about the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) scientific conclusions in the “Amerithrax” case. He first introduced the legislation in September 2008.

“The NAS report makes clear there are still questions to be answered and still lessons to be learned about the FBI’s investigation into the attacks,” Holt said. “It would take a credulous person to believe the circumstantial evidence that the FBI used to draw its conclusions with such certainty. The FBI has not proven to me that this is an open and shut case. We still badly need a 9/11-style commission to determine how the attacks happened and whether we learned the lessons to prepare for another attack.”

The 11-member bipartisan commission would investigate the attacks, assess the federal government’s response to and investigation of the attacks, and make recommendations to the President and Congress on how the country can best prevent or respond to a future bioterror attack. Just as the 9/11 Commission looked not only at the attacks of that morning, but also at recommended changes in the structure of government agencies, screening methods, and Congressional oversight, an anthrax commission would look not only at the attacks, but also measures for prevention, detection, and investigation of any future bio-terrorism.
The commission would consider scientific, technical evidence as well as classified evidence the NAS did not examine.

The 2001 attacks evidently originated from a postal box in Holt’s Central New Jersey congressional district, disrupting the lives and livelihoods of many of his constituents. Holt has consistently raised questions about the federal investigation into the attacks.

“Too many questions remain about the anthrax attacks and the government’s bungled response to the attacks,” Holt said. “A high level commission, like the 9/11 Commission, would be a start-to-finish examination of the many outstanding questions, and it would help American families know that the government is prepared to protect them and their children from future bioterrorism attacks.”


33 posted on 02/17/2011 4:43:35 PM PST by Justice Department
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To: Shermy; TrebleRebel; ZACKandPOOK; Mitchell; jpl; Calpernia; Stentor; okie01; blackdog; ...

ping


34 posted on 02/18/2011 12:21:18 AM PST by Allan (*-O)):~{>)
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To: Justice Department
I also hope that there will be a commission to study the Amerithrax investigation. It can only help. It can't hurt. And it can only help show that Ivins was the sole culprit.

The GAO will be reviewing the case, too. They have been working on it for some time. They were just waiting for the NAS to finish before they began working on their conclusions.

CIDRAP news has an article titled "Anthrax expert says NRC report supports FBI" which contains these tidbits of information:

The National Research Council's (NRC's) report on the FBI's anthrax investigation amounts to a general endorsement of the agency's scientific approach, even though the NRC found that the purely scientific evidence on the source of the anthrax used in the 2001 attacks was not conclusive, a leading anthrax expert said today.

"I actually have been telling people this is a qualified endorsement of the science in the [FBI] investigation," Paul S. Keim, PhD, a Northern Arizona University microbiologist who helped the FBI investigate the anthrax attacks, told CIDRAP News. ......

Keim said the NRC panel is not saying the FBI was wrong, only that the scientific evidence wasn't as strong as the agency suggested. ....

Keim—who described himself as a friend of Ivins' who was surprised when the probe led to him—noted that some media headlines have said the NRC committee doubts the link to Ivins. "The committee isn't saying that. . . . All the major conclusions that the FBI came to, the committee said, 'Yeah, the evidence is consistent with that.'"

Ed at www.anthraxinvestigation.com

35 posted on 02/18/2011 6:40:13 AM PST by EdLake
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To: EdLake

Sen. Leahy says 2001 anthrax case shouldn’t be closed
by Paul Tinder on February 17, 2011

In a reflection last month on his own experience as a would-be target of an assassin, Senator Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.) said that he has never accepted the FBI’s decision to close the anthrax-laced letter case from 2001.

Leahy was one of the targets of the anthrax letters sent to him and then-Senate Majority Leader Thomas A. Daschle (D-S.D.) which caused the deaths of five people and caused 17 others to fall ill. Leahy’s comments come in light of the recent National Research Council’s report questioning the FBI’s allegation that Fort Detrick scientist Bruce E. Ivins was the culprit, the Washington Post reports.

Ivins committed suicide in July 2008 as he was about to be indicted, but his lawyer has continued to maintain his innocence.

“I still wonder who sent it and why they sent it,” Leahy said, according to the Washington Post. “I’ve expressed those concerns to the FBI and this report adds to those concerns.”

There have been several calls to form an independent commission to continue the investigation.

“Were there people who at the very least were accessories after the fact?” Leahy said, according to the Washington Post. “I think there were. Why would he send one to Tom Brokaw, to Tom Daschle, to me, to the man at the National Enquirer in Florida?

“They have to make their decisions; I have to make mine. In my mind, it’s not closed. Call it an old prosecutor’s instinct.”

http://www.bioprepwatch.com/news/233446-sen-leahy-says-2001-anthrax-case-shouldnt-be-closed


36 posted on 02/18/2011 6:50:16 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: EdLake
“Personally, I think that my analysis of the evidence showing that Bruce Ivins planned to murder his former lab assistant Mara Linscott more than a year before the anthrax attacks is far far more important to understanding the Amerithrax investigation than anything in the NAS report.”

-Thoughts and Comments
by Ed Lake

Figures.

37 posted on 02/20/2011 8:13:07 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: EdLake

Ed wrote:

“According to The Washington Post, it was in June of 2000 that Ivins became a client of Comprehensive Counseling Associates, about 1-1/2 miles from where Ivins lived. The Post says:

He began weekly individual sessions with a licensed clinical professional counselor there. The counselor said she remembers him as precise and unfailingly polite, yet sometimes “very cold, without emotion.”

On his second or third visit, the counselor said, “he got bizarre.” Ivins talked of a young woman living somewhere in the Northeast and said he planned to drive to watch her play in a soccer game. “I think he was infatuated or thinking about getting involved,” recalled the counselor,”

___________________________________________________________

Tales of Addiction, Anxiety, Ranting
Scientist, Counselor Recount Recent Turmoil in Anthrax Suspect’s Life

“Before he died July 29 of a Tylenol overdose, Ivins, 62, had two inpatient stays at Maryland hospitals for detoxification and rehabilitation and attended two sets of therapy sessions with a counselor who eventually sought court protection from him.

Ivins had just returned from a four-week stay at a psychiatric hospital in Western Maryland in late May when he wrote the fellow scientist in recovery a calm, six-sentence e-mail. “I hope,” it said, “that both of us avoid relapsing into our previous substance abuse.” Since his death, Ivins’s long-term mental health and the psychological effects of the investigation have become increasingly prominent questions.

The counselor he saw for group therapy and biweekly individual sessions, who would eventually tell a judge that he was a “sociopathic, homicidal killer,” had a troubled past. Jean C. Duley, who worked until recent days for Comprehensive Counseling Associates in Frederick, is licensed as an entry-level drug counselor and was, according to one of her mentors, allowed to work with clients only under supervision of a more-seasoned professional.

Shortly before she sought a “peace order” against Ivins, Duley had completed 90 days of home detention after a drunken-driving arrest in December, and she has acknowledged drug use in her past.

In a 1999 interview with The Washington Post, Duley described her background as a motorcycle gang member and a drug user. “Heroin. Cocaine. PCP,” said Duley, who then used the name Jean Wittman. “You name it, I did it.”


38 posted on 02/20/2011 9:30:24 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: EdLake

39 posted on 02/20/2011 9:40:14 AM PST by Justice Department
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To: Justice Department
I'm not sure what you are trying to say, but the counselor who in June of 2000 listened to Bruce Ivins describe a plan to murder a "young woman" (who was actually his former assistant) was NOT repeat NOT the same counselor (Jean Duley) who in July of 2008 took out a restraining order against Ivins after he told his therapy group that he was planning to murder his co-workers and "go out in a blaze of glory."

Both counselors worked for Comprehensive Counseling Associates, but the counselor from 2000 refused to deal with Ivins any further after she was forced to call the police because of his murder plot involving poison. We don't know her name, we only know what she told the Washington Post.

Jean Duley had only been working with Ivins for about six months in 2008 before he made his threats about killing his co-workers.

Ed at www.anthraxinvestigation.com

40 posted on 02/20/2011 1:21:58 PM PST by EdLake
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To: Justice Department
Two different counselors, two different murder plots - eight years apart.

Ed at www.anthraxinvestigation.com

41 posted on 02/20/2011 1:27:57 PM PST by EdLake
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