April 25, 2014

Substance in Beloit remains a mystery

The State Crime Lab will try to identify a substance inside an envelope that caused 15 people at a Beloit clinic to be treated at a hospital. A National Guard unit examined the powder Wednesday but those tests failed to pinpoint the content.

Beloit Police captain Vince Sciame said it was not a biological or chemical agent. He said a patient at the Beloit Area Community Health Center delivered the envelope Wednesday morning. It had a payment for a bill, but the man denied putting a foreign substance inside – and he said he was “dumb-founded” by what happened. He said the man “gave us no indication of mal intent.”

Three clinic employees who handled the envelope had discomfort and burning in their noses-and-eyes. Fifteen people were taken to a hospital as a precaution and all were later released. Fifty-six others were quarantined inside the clinic, most employees.

Sciame said they were sent home with advice to call their doctors if they get symptoms.