Joe Persichini, the Assistant Director of the DC FBI Field Office said of Bruce Ivins yesterday, "It appears, based on the evidence, that he was acting alone."
Yet he and DC US Attorney Jeff Taylor seem painfully aware that their evidence doesn’t add up to a compelling case. In particular, Taylor and Persichini dodged and weaved whenever asked about any hard evidence that tied Bruce Ivins to the mailing–rather than just the production–of the anthrax.
For example, Taylor made an incredibly misleading statement to suggest that the envelopes used in the attack were only available in Frederick Maryland. He claimed that, "based on the analysis, we were able to conclude that the envelopes used in the mailings were very likely sold in a post office in the Frederick, MD post office in 2001." He continued to say that Ivins maintained a PO Box "at the post office from which these pre-franked envelopes were sold."
But the truth is that Frederick Maryland is just one of hundreds of post offices at which those envelopes would have been available:
Subsequent to the attacks, an effort was made to collect all such envelopes for possible forensic examination, including the identification of defects that occur during the envelope manufacturing process. As a result of this collection, envelopes with printing defects identical to printing defects identified on the envelopes utilized in the anthrax attacks during the fall of 2001 were collected fiom the Fairfax Main post office in Fairfax, Virginia and the Cumberland and Elkton post offices in Maryland. The Fairfax Main, Cumberland, Maryland, and Elkton, Maryland post offices are supplied by the Dulles Stamp Distribution Office (SDO), located in Dulles, Virginia. The Dulles SDO distributed "federal eagle" envelopes to post offices throughout Maryland and Virginia. Given that the printing defects identified on the envelopes used in the attacks are transient, thereby being present on only a small population of the federal eagle envelopes produced, and that envelopes with identical printing defects to those identified on the envelopes used in the attacks were recovered fiom post offices serviced by the Dulles SDO, it is reasonable to conclude that the federal eagle envelopes utilized in the attacks were purchased from a post office in Maryland or Virginia. [my emphasis]