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FBI Joins Local, State Agencies Investigating Suspicious White-Powder Letter Sent To Samaritan’s Purse in Boone

By Jesse Wood

Feb. 2, 2015. The FBI is involved in the investigation concerning a suspicious letter that contained a white-powdery substance that the headquarters of Samaritan’s Purse in Boone received on Friday.

“Every investigative and safety precaution is being taken regarding this matter. Although the vast majority of white-powder letters are determined to be hoaxes, no incident is taken lightly. Each incident is treated as a real event and the FBI and partners have leveraged the necessary resources to investigate these matters. The FBI responds rapidly to evaluate the threat and collect evidence in support of any potential criminal investigation,” according to a statement provided by Shelley Lynch, a public affairs specialist with the FBI Charlotte Division.

On Friday afternoon, local law enforcement and hazardous materials units were on the scene at the headquarters located on Bamboo Road investigating the matter. Watauga County Sheriff Len Hagaman said he was on the scene at the time but couldn’t provide further comment, directing media to Samaritan’s Purse officials.

Samaritan’s Purse released a brief statement on Friday:

“A suspicious letter was received via the U.S. mail today at the Samaritan’s Purse headquarters in Boone, NC. It contained a white powdery substance and was immediately reported to the proper authorities who are investigating,” Samaritan’s Purse said in a brief statement.

WBTV reported that one person, who is expected to be fine, was exposed to the undisclosed substance in the package.

For additional updates, a spokesperson for Samaritan’s Purse directed media to Lynch.

Lynch noted that more information will be released when the investigation is complete.