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Friday, 31 August 2018 16:16

City woman charged in NCCU biochemical mail hoax

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A Roanoke Rapids woman surrendered to city police Thursday night and faces a charge of perpetrating a hoax involving use of a fake biochemical substance sent to the campus of North Carolina Central University in Durham.

Roanoke Rapids Chief Chuck Hasty confirmed Destinee Knecole Ricks, 20, surrendered around 10 p.m. to officers C. Batchelor and N. Velazquez.

She faces a count of perpetrating a hoax by use of false nuclear, biological or chemical weapon.

The charge centers around a case last week when a suspicious envelope containing a white powdery substance was found in the McDougald House on campus, WRAL reported on August 23.

The substance turned out to be bleached flour, the TV station reported.

Immediate efforts today to discover the 20-year-old’s connection to the university or why she would allegedly send an envelope of flour to the school were unsuccessful.

Calls to the NCCU campus police were directed to the university’s public relations and marketing department.

According to the warrant for arrest taken out by Joseph F. Wadlington of the NCCU police, Ricks “unlawfully, willfully and feloniously did with the intent to perpetrate a hoax concealed a mailed letter at (the) undergraduate admissions office at North Carolina Central University so as to cause employee to reasonably believe the item to be a biological and chemical weapon of mass destruction. The defendant intended for the mailed letter to be mistaken for a white powder.”

She received a $3,000 bond and September 4 court date in Durham County.

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