Suspicious powder found in letters sent to congressmen

Posted at 4:05 PM, Feb 22, 2013

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WTVR) — Police are investigating after an unknown white substance was discovered in envelopes at two Virginia congressmen’s offices Friday.

WTKR reports that the substance was found at the offices of Congressman Scott Rigell in Virginia Beach and Congressman Randy Forbes in Chesapeake.

Virginia Beach Fire Department crews tested the substance found at Rigell’s office and determined that it is not dangerous.

Chesapeake police and fire also responded after a letter-sized envelope containing a white, powdery substance turned up at to Congressman Randy Forbes’ office. Officials do not know if the envelope was mailed or hand-delivered.

No injuries have been reported.

Congressman Scott Rigell’s Chief of Staff issued this statement:

“Earlier this afternoon a letter was received and opened in our Virginia Beach office which contained an unidentified substance. The local authorities as well as the United States Capitol Police were alerted and the office was immediately evacuated. The Virginia Beach fire and police departments responded with great speed and the letter was removed. It will be analyzed to determine if the contents were harmful in nature. Since the staff member who opened the letter immediately put it aside once the substance was noticed, the subject and intent of the letter is not known.
The Congressman’s staff are fine and we appreciate the urgency and thoroughness of our local first responders.”