CASE CLOSED … what really happened in the 2001 anthrax attacks?

* Dr. Patricia Worsham in her civil deposition said that RMR 1029 had been stored previously in Bldg 1412 and that in Bldg 1425 foreign nationals would have been in the containment suite on an escorted basis

Posted by Lew Weinstein on December 15, 2013

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13 Responses to “* Dr. Patricia Worsham in her civil deposition said that RMR 1029 had been stored previously in Bldg 1412 and that in Bldg 1425 foreign nationals would have been in the containment suite on an escorted basis”

  1. DXer said

    In one of the buildings, the FBI’s review “showed that 300 identifiable individuals entered rooms…” Another thirty (30) individuals utilized the access points but used non-identifiable badges or non-identifiable personal indentificaiton numbers….”

    I understand the paragraph to be referring to Building 1425. So that would make 330 individuals who needed to be eliminated — including 30 who were not identifiable.

    The next paragraph reads:

    “It should be noted that several aspects of the time frame RMR 1029 was stored in Building ___ are still under intense investigation.”

    Washington Field From: Washington Field
    Re: 279A-WF-222936-USAMRIID, 1/11/2006

  2. DXer said

    The Flask 1029 inventory being withheld from disclosure confirms the sworn testimony of former Bacteriology Chief Patricia Worsham and numerous others. It shows that the Flask was stored in BUILDING 1412 and the LAST ENTRY WAS 4/3/2000.

    A copy of the Flask 1029 inventory that can be found within evidence item 1B4377. It is from the November 2007 search of Dr. Ivins office. (Source: 279A-WF222936-BEI-147)

    • DXer said

      errata –
      The version of the Flask 1029 inventory showing that it was being stored in Building 1412 — with a last entry of 4/3/2000 — has been produced and is online at, I believe, page 109 of 189 pages in this part.

      http://vault.fbi.gov/Amerithrax/Amerithrax%20Part%20%2013%20of%2059

      Now compare this inventory with US Attorney Taylor’s August 2008 press conference in which he argued Dr. Ivins was guilty because the flask was only kept in Building 1425 and they had eliminated everyone with access in Building 1425. Instead of 100 who needed to be eliminated (by the FBI’s count), up to 300 needed to be eliminated. And that’s just at USAMRIID.

      Given the absence of any direct evidence, the FBI’s entire reasoning was based on this specious “process of elimination” that was based on a premise that should have been known to be untrue at the time of the US Attorney Taylor’s press conference.

      http://vault.fbi.gov/Amerithrax/Amerithrax%20Part%20%2013%20of%2059

      • DXer said

        In terms of determining when the date was changed, note that there is yet another version of the RMR 1029 inventory contained in a notebook issued April 5, 2000 — showing a last entry of June 2000 on the flask 1029 inventory.

        The Building indicated — whether 1412 or 1425 — is redacted but an unredacted copy would serve to further assist in understanding when the date was changed.
        279A-WF-222936, 01/11/2006

  3. DXer said

    In his civil deposition produced today, Dr. Byrne is asked about access:

    “A. And anybody who — any — you could just pick up a dead mouse, you know, and you have got the bug. I mean, any animal that’s been exposed to it would be a source of it, too.” (p. 74).

    A. “Noboday said it could have been taken from a mouse that died of anthrax, but I don’t know why that wouldn’t be surmised.” (p. 75)

  4. DXer said

    In the civil deposition recently produced under FOIA, Dr. Andrews testified:

    “You’ve been quoted previously as saying — and I think you basically testified here today — that at the time that the RMR 1029 was in Building 1412, it was not under Dr. Ivins direct custody or control. Is that accurate?

    A. Yes.”

    Page 47.

  5. DXer said

    Dr. Patricia Worsham describes her trip to Florida in mid-October 2001:

    Q. “Okay. And did you go down to Florida?”

    A. “I did.”

    Q. “Did you participate in the autopsy?”

    A. “No. I’m a Ph.D, not an M.D. I wouldn’t have been much good at an autopsy.”

    Q. “I thought maybe you collected samples or something like that.”

    A. “No, I went down to assist the Environmental Protection Agency with evaluating contamination in the AMI BUilding. So I didn’t go down until approximately the 15th of October.” ….

    A. “We set up shop in a tuberculosis sanitarium. They gave us part of their laboratory space. There were probably thousands of samples brought in, most of them swabs, some of them vacuum cleaning samples, a lot of different materials, sometimes object[s] would be brought in for sampling. There were three of us down there initially, two people from diagnostic systems division, and I was the microbiologist, so we processed samples looking for bacillus anthracis specifically, for evidence of bacillus anthracis in an ECL assay, electrochemiluminescence, looking for production of protective antigens.”

    “I don’t believe we had any PCR going on at that time; I think it was primarily ECL and culture.”

    Q. “Okay. Who were the other two people from USAMRIID that went down?

    A. “Neal Woollen, now Lieutenant Colonel Woollen.

    … And the other was his technician, who’s Wes Carter.”

    Q. “And you said — what division are they from?”
    A. “Diagnostic Systems.”
    Q. “How long did you spend down in Florida?”
    A. “Between two and three weeks.”


    A. I don’t recall speaking to anyone other than employees of the TB facility, members of the FBI, the Environmental Protection Agency and CDC. And I occasionally called USAMRIID to remind that I hadn’t dropped off the map.”

    ***

    A… “When I came back, Pat Fellows went down, and I don’t know how long she spent; probably a couple of weeks more.”

    (pp. 14-15)

    Note: The DOJ shredded Pat Fellows’ civil deposition.

    • DXer said

      Dr. Patricia Worsham testified that:

      “I have not been convinced by the scientific evidence presented by the FBi that this preparation traces to USAMRIID.”

      Q. “Okay. Have you testified before the National Academy of Sciences?”

      A. “Yes, I have.”

      Q. “Was that testimony relative to the scientific portion of the analysis of the anthrax?”

      A. “It was purely scientific. There were no questions regarding my personal opinions about anything other than the science that I had conducted.” (pp. 19-20)

    • DXer said

      A. “I think that there were four morphs that were pursued during the course of this investigation that were present in RMR 1029.

      I’m aware of other morphs that were never pursued. I would like to have seen the results of trying to tie a relationship between those Dugway preps, the RMR 029 preps that were made from the Dugway preps, and what was found in the letters. So I think that that was incomplete.

      I guess my larger scientific concern is that the FBI based this interpretation on what was in the repository, and my personal opinion is, if someone had committed this heinous act, they probably would not have sent the FBI an accurate representation of what they had in their collection.”

      “So did the FBI have one hundred percent representation of every Ames culture in the world? I seriously doubt it. And I do know that RMR 1029 was also sent out to other locations.” (pp. 19-20)

    • DXer said

      At page 29, she says she did not find persuasive the FBI’s argument on this issue of the sample submission — that it was Dr. Ivins who was trying to mislead. She says the same information could just as easily been argued differently, in a different direction. But the details would intrude on what she discussed with the FBI (and DOJ counsel had been raising the law enforcement privilege).

  6. DXer said

    At page 11-12 of her deposition, Dr. Worsham describes her suitemate Bruce Ivins:

    Q. “And what was your relationship like with Dr. Ivins in terms of — lets start with a work relationship.”

    A. “He was a very enthusiastic scientist. He was a good mentor. He was always willing to share his knowledge. I thought he did an excellent job with training young scientists.

    We got along very well in the office, other than he tended to talk a lot, and sometimes I needed a little more quiet, but I would say in general we got along very well.”

    Q “When you changed offices mid-’90s, say around ’95, then, were you still in relatively close proximity with Dr. Ivins?”

    A. “Just around the corner.”

    Q. “When the anthrax letter attacks occurred in the fall of 2001, how did you first find out about them?”

  7. DXer said

    At her sworn civil deposition held at Fort Detrick on February 7, 2011, Dr. Worsham, whose office was in the same B3 at issue, addressed the viability of the FBI’s “Ivins Theory.”

    “I don’t believe that we had facilities at USAMRIID to make that kind of preparation. It would have taken a great deal of time; it would have taken a huge number of cultures; it would have taken a lot resources that would have been obvious other people within containment when they wanted to use those resources.

    We did not have anything in containment suitable for drying down anything, must less a quantity of spores. The lyophilzer that was part of our division was in noncontainment. If someone had used that to dry down that preparation, I would have expect that area to be very, very contaminated, and I might have expected some of them to become ill.

    ***

    For as long as I have been at USAMRIID, we have exclusively used liquid spore preparations for our animal challenges, and that’s what we have been trained to produce, and produce well. I have not seen any evidence of anyone getting any training that would allow them to do that.

    Q To do what?

    A Produce dried material of that quality.

    Q Is that something that is complicated, difficult to do?

    A I think it would be very difficult to do, given the equipment that we have, because our equipment is not made for that.

    Q So you’re saying that absolutely and without question, in our mind the equipment that’s at USAMRIID could not have been used to prepare the dried spore preparations used in the letters.

    A. Not any equipment I have seen.”

  8. DXer said

    Flask 1029 was registered as #7737 at Building 1412
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 21, 2011

    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/03/21/flask-1029-was-registered-as-7737-at-building-1412-and-7738-was-eventually-found-but-how-was-7736-used-up/

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