In this month's episode of Framing Someone with Ricin, a pregnant Texas actress and her Army Vet husband are accusing one another of mailing the latest round of ricin-laced letters to President Obama and Mayor Bloomberg.
The epic tale of love, loss, and strong feelings on gun control began last week when 36-year-old actress Shannon Guess contacted authorities claiming that she had found directions for making ricin, Google search results for Obama and Bloomberg, and a refrigerated Tupperware container of ricin in her home. Guess has appeared as an actress in such productions as the Walking Dead, the Vampire Diaries, the Blind Side, and an Avis car commercial.
Authorities responded by arresting her husband, 33-year-old Nathaniel Richardson. A search revealed castor beans (which naturally contain ricin) in Richardson's car, but the feds released him Friday, saying there wasn't enough evidence to hold him. The beans were allegedly purchased with a credit card, but Richardson claimed that he doesn't use plastic.
Richardson is now accusing his wife of framing him, and she was brought in for questioning after Richardson was released yesterday afternoon. The New York Post reports Guess wore "tight jeans, platform shoes and a tight blue tank top that showed off her obviously pregnant belly" to meet authorities at the courthouse. According to CBS, Guess knew "specific details" about the letters.
A source told the Post that the Richardson and Guess were having problems. “[Richardson] says they are going through a divorce and that she was away for a few days,” a law-enforcement source told the paper. “He says it was when she got back that she found the [purported] ricin.” Authorities intend to polygraph both Guess and Richardson.
The unhappy couple were married in 2011 and Guess has five children from previous relationships. Guess's IMDB profile claims that she has two tattoos, plays the flute, and holds paralegal and teaching degrees. Her biography page also says that she was abandoned by her mother at the age of two and was raised by her father. She has been married three times according to the Post.
Richardson was a wheeled-vehicle mechanic at Fort Bliss, and now works at the Red River Army Depot, an Army vehicle repair center. The Texarkana Gazette reports that Richardson's Facebook page lists his work and education as “Them Streets.” Richardson also describes himself as a “nerd, dork, cracker. May 1980 to present.”
The ricin-laced letters at the heart of the investigation were mailed on May 20 from Shreveport, LA, and bore messages warning against gun control. Shreveport is about an hour-and-a-half away from the couple's home in New Boston, TX. According to CBS, the ricin was "crudely made and of poor quality," and the US Postal Service announced that none of the letters posed a health risk. Officials say ingesting crude, homemade ricin, typically made by grinding the beans and soaking them in acetone, would likely produce symptoms as mild as diarrhea.