FBI agents headed to an interview with an unidentified inmate Friday after an envelope containing a powdery substance was received at the U.S. District Clerk’s Office in Baton Rouge.
U.S. Marshal Kevin Harrison said a letter in the envelope also mentioned a bomb, but added that a search of the Russell B. Long Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse did not reveal any explosives.
“No one has found anything suspicious, other than the letter,” Harrison said.
The envelope containing the letter and powdery substance was opened about 2 p.m., Harrison said at 2:30 p.m.
“A hazardous materials team came in and conducted a preliminary test,” Harrison said. “That preliminary test indicated no toxicity, but they don’t know what it is.”
While the area of the clerk’s office containing the letter was quarantined during the preliminary test — along with the affected employee — Harrison said: “The courthouse was never closed.”
The marshal added the letter and its contents were forwarded to the FBI laboratory in Virginia for additional tests.
Harrison declined to identify the inmate or the jail or prison at which he or she is confined outside East Baton Rouge Parish.
“It appears the letter was sent from an inmate in another parish,” Harrison said.
“I can confirm that we are investigating at this time,” Special Agent Mary Romig, of the FBI office in New Orleans, said Friday afternoon.
Romig said no additional information was available.