You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Tennessee

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Tennessee Prisoner Indicted For Anthrax Hoax

Indictment Alleges That Defendant Mailed Threatening Letter Containing White Powder
To Sumner County District Attorney’s Office in Gallatin, Tennessee

Justin Tyler Carter,  28, was indicted by a federal grand jury in Nashville on October 15, 2014 in a 2-count indictment charging him with sending threats through the U.S. Postal Service and conveying false information indicating the use or attempted use of Anthrax, announced David Rivera, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee.

According to the indictment, on April 14, 2014, while Carter was a prisoner at Riverbend Maximum Security Institute in Nashville, he prepared and sent a threatening letter to an Assistant District Attorney at the 18th Judicial District of Tennessee.  In the letter, Carter threatened to kill the Assistant District Attorney and the public defender that represented him.  The letter also contained white powder that Carter claimed was Anthrax.

“Threats involving the use of Anthrax cause significant disruption in the workplace and to government operations,” said U.S. Attorney David Rivera.   “Such threats often exhaust public safety resources and cause needless harm to the public.  For those who choose to engage in such conduct, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and our law enforcement partners will act swiftly to neutralize the threat, identify those responsible and bring them to justice.”

“This incident caused tremendous disruption to our office and to the people of Sumner County,” said Ray Whitley, Sumner County District Attorney.  “Any threat made to any entity of our justice system, with the intent to disrupt or impede the administration of justice, or in retaliation for justice served, will always be met with a coordinated response that will insure those responsible are held accountable for their actions.”

If convicted, Carter faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count.

This case was investigated by the FBI. Assistant United States Attorney Van Vincent is representing the government.

An indictment is merely an accusation and is not evidence of guilt. Defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

Updated March 19, 2015