Shannon Guess Richardson, an aspiring actress and model, has received the maximum sentence for sending ricin-laced letters to President Obama and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg. A judge handed down the maximum sentence for the plea deal granted. Richardson sent the letters and then put the blame on her soon-to-be ex-husband. She will now be serving 18 years in a federal prison.
After copping to the charges in December, Richardson pleaded, as reported by The Associated Press, “I never intended for anybody to be hurt. I’m not a bad person; I don’t have it in me to hurt anyone.” Ricin is considered a biological toxin, but Richardson claimed she believed that security measures would stop anyone from getting hurt.
Shannon was caught after investigators noticed that she had bought materials needed to produce ricin online. Previously she had told them her estranged partner had committed the crime, though she was quickly caught up in her lies and confessed. She had sent the letters from New Boston, outside Texarkana, before notifying police.
In a signed statement, Richardson admitted buying castor beans and then researched how to transform them into ricin. She bought the beans by making an email account and PayPal account in her ex-husband’s name, as well as a P.O. box for them to be delivered too. The plan was then put into place on May 20, 2013 after her husband had left for work.
The letter sent to the POTUS read, “What’s in this letter is nothing compared to what ive got in store for you mr president. You will have to kill me and my family before you get my guns. Anyone wants to come to my house will get shot in the face.” Luckily for the president and population at large, she will be behind bars for a long time.