By Michael Harrelson, editor, HottyToddy.com
A 3 p.m. detention hearing is scheduled today in Oxford for the 45-year-old Corinth man who was arrested and is accused of sending suspected ricin-laced letters to President Barack Obama, U.S. Senator Roger Wicker and a Mississippi justice official.
Shackled and wearing a Johnny Cash t-shirt, Paul Kevin Curtis appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge S. Allan Alexander on Thursday, where federal officials filed a criminal complaint against him that charged him with making threats against the president and others in letters mailed from Memphis, Tennessee, on April 8.
The detention hearing is expected to lead to a formal federal arrest warrant and the arraignment of the defendant on charges that he made threats to injure Obama, Wicker and others in violation of federal law.
The letter mailed to Wicker has tested positive for the poison ricin in initial tests, according to federal law enforcement officials.
Curtis’s alleged communication with the Mississippi senator was intercepted at an off-site Postal Service facility set up to screen mail sent to the U.S. Capitol and was never delivered to Wicker’s office.
According to the federal complaint, the letter stated, “No one wanted to listen to me before. There are still ‘Missing Pieces’. Maybe I have your attention now. Even if that means someone must die. This must stop. To see a wrong and not expose it, is to become a silent partner to its continuance. I am KC and I approve this message.”
The “wrong” referred to in the letter reportedly stems from an incident dating back to 2001, when Curtis claims to have discovered a black market operation in body parts while working in the morgue of a Tupelo, Mississippi, hospital.
The alleged incident, which ultimately led to Curtis being terminated by the hospital, is believed to be the basis for Curtis’ assertions that he has been the subject of government surveillance.
An Elvis impersonator once hired by Wicker and his wife to provide entertainment for the wedding of a constituent, Curtis has written numerous e-mails and blogs alleging that he was the subject of government persecution. A number of the letters and e-mails have ended with the same line found in the letters outlined in the federal complaint against him: “I am KC and I approve this message.”
Through his attorney, Christi McCoy, Curtis denies the federal charges made against him in the federal complaint.
“Kevin maintains 100 percent that he did not do this,” McCoy told HottyToddy.com after the complaint hearing. “At this point, I have not seen any true evidence to the contrary. He was absolutely surprised.”
McCoy said Curtis told her of being surrounded at his home by a number of black vehicles and big guns prior to his being taken into federal custody.
“He was leaving his home to go to his former home where his former wife and children live. He actually had his son’s dog and his groceries. He was going to cook for the family,” McCoy said.
If convicted, Curtis face a federal prison sentence of up to 15 years.