Anthrax Suspect "Homicidal, Sociopathic"

Counselor sought restraining order against biodefense researcher

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Anthrax Suspect "Homicidal, Sociopathic"

AUGUST 1--The government biodefense researcher who committed suicide as federal prosecutors reportedly prepared to indict him in connection with the 2001 anthrax attacks was committed to a Maryland psychiatric hospital last month after making death threats against a counselor, according to court records.

Bruce Ivins, 62, who died Tuesday of a drug overdose, had been scheduled to appear yesterday in a Frederick County court in connection with a protective order application filed by Jean Duley, program director of Comprehensive Counseling Associates.

In her July 24 petition, a copy of which you'll find here, Duley referred to Ivins as a 'client' who 'has a history dating to his graduate days of homicidal threats, actions, plans, threats & actions towards therapist.' Duley added that Ivins's psychiatrist called him 'homicidal, sociopathic with clear intentions,' and that 'FBI involved, currently under investigation & will be charged w/ 5 capital murders. I have been subpoena to testify before a federal grand jury August 1, 2008 in Washington, D.C..'

Duley's court filing was apparently triggered by several threatening phone messages left by Ivins early last month. Her petition for a peace order, which was granted by a District Court judge, added that Ivins was hospitalized last month at Frederick Memorial Hospital and then transferred to Sheppard Pratt, a psychiatric facility. Ivins, Duley stated, 'was to have commitment hearing July 16th/signed in vol. to get himself out.'

On July 25, a sheriff's deputy sought to serve Ivins with court papers at Fort Detrick, but was advised by an Army official that Ivins 'has been barred from the property,' according to a return of service form filed by the Frederick County Sheriff's Office. The peace order against Ivins was formally dismissed yesterday in light of his death.

Ivins, an anthrax researcher, worked for 36 years at the U.S. Army's Fort Detrick facility, according to an obituary. Fort Detrick has been has been a focus of federal investigators probing the 2001 attacks, which killed five people, since scientists there, including Ivins, have done extensive research on inhaled anthrax spores.

According to the Los Angeles Times, federal prosecutors were about to file criminal charges against Ivins, and that the researcher had 'been informed of his impending prosecution.' (7 pages)