'White Powdery Substance' Sent to Cruz Office, 2 People Sent to Hospital


Two people were rushed to a hospital from Sen. Ted Cruz’s campaign office in Houston on Tuesday after an envelope was opened containing a “white powdery substance.”

The Houston Fire Department reported that its HazMat team was deployed to the location.

“Two people were taken to the hospital after apparently being exposed to a white powdery substance in an office building at 3200 SW Fwy,” the Houston Fire Department tweeted.

“The 9th floor of the Phoenix Tower has been evacuated as HFD HazMat is responding to the scene working to determine the nature of the substance.”

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In an update, the Fire Department said that the substance was tested and found not to contain a hazardous substance.

Cruz’s spokeswoman, Catherine Frazier, told The Associated Press those taken to the hospital were not from the senator’s staff.

“Frazier says the package was opened in the lobby, and that the authorities locked down the lobby and elevator for a couple of hours,” according to the AP.

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The scare at Cruz’s office came the same day that the Pentagon disclosed that it found at least two packages Monday that were suspected of containing the deadly white power ricin.

Fox News reported the packages were addressed to Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Chief of Naval Operations Admiral John Richardson.

According to Fox, the packages never made it into the Pentagon itself, but were flagged in the mail delivery building next door.

Initial tests were positive for ricin, which is a poison made from castor beans, a Pentagon spokesman said. The FBI is doing a more detailed analysis of the substance.

“On Monday, the Pentagon Force Protection Agency detected a suspicious substance during mail screening at the Pentagon’s remote screening facility,” Col. Rob Manning said in a statement to Fox News. “All USPS mail received at the Pentagon mail screening facility yesterday is currently under quarantine and poses no threat to Pentagon personnel.”

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According to the Centers for Disease Control, “ricin is very toxic. It works by getting inside the cells of a person’s body and preventing the cells from making the proteins they need. Without the proteins, cells die. Eventually this is harmful to the whole body, and may cause death.”

“Death from ricin poisoning can take place within 36 to 72 hours of exposure, depending on the route of exposure (inhalation, ingestion, or injection) and the dose received,” according to the CDC.

Ricin poisoning is not contagious, and “people who were not present where the ricin was found are not likely to have been exposed at levels high enough to negatively affect their health.”

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 2,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Graduated dean's list from West Point
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith