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TODAY   |  April 18, 2013

Suspect arrested over ricin-poisoned letter to Obama

A suspect has been arrested after two letters addressed to President Obama and GOP Sen. Roger Wicker preliminarily tested positive for poisonous ricin, putting authorities in the nation’s capital on edge. NBC’s Peter Alexander reports.

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>>> a suspect is in custody this morning after allegedly mailing letters to the president and a senator that potentially contain the poison ricin. peter alexander following that story at the white house with the latest. peter, good morning.

>> good morning to you. that suspect was arrested at his home in mississippi wednesday evening. an elvis impersonator federal officials say in his early 40s. the arrest in mississippi late wednesday rapidly concluded a day that left the nation's capital on edge. the fbi says the suspect paul kevin curtis sent three letters that tested positive for ricin. one to president obama , another to mississippi republican senator roger wicker , and a third, local authorities said, to a mississippi justice official.

>> there are great consistencies between the content, the letter itself, the way the letter was written, the postmark of the letter.

>> the fbi says the letters to the president and senator were postmarked memphis, tennessee, ten days ago with identical language including the phrase, to see a wrong and not expose it is to become a silent partner to its continuance signed i am k.c. and i approve this message. those were never delivered. intercepted by a precaution put in place after the anthrax attacks that killed five people shortly after 9/11. and federal officials say more tests are needed, natalie, to determine if, in fact, that substance was ricin, and if so, how strong. there seems to be no connection to the bombings in boston.

>> peter alexander at the white house for us this morning,