Paul Kevin Curtis reacts to dropped charges in ricin case

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Updated: 4/24/2013 12:26 am
OXFORD, Miss. (WTVA) -- Paul Kevin Curtis got his first taste of sunshine in nearly a week, released Tuesday from jail, and cleared of all charges.

Curtis had been implicated in a case where ricin-laced letters were sent to President Obama, Sen. Roger Wicker and Lee County Justice Court Judge Sadie Holland.

Tuesday, he stood before a crowd of reporters and told them how he felt when he learned he would be released.

"Elated, amazed. It's unbelievable, like you said, a weight lifted off," Curtis said. "I've become closer with God throughout this, closer with my children, and I've even had some estranged relationships with outer cousins and family, that I feel this has strengthened and brought us all back together as a family."

Curtis' defense attorney Christi McCoy maintains there was a lack of evidence in the case, but that isn't what changed the situation Tuesday, when the preliminary hearing was supposed to enter a third day.

"They had obtained information, which tends to be exculpatory. So they had to tell me. Chad Lamar -- the assistant U.S. attorney who's pretty much headed this up -- said, 'Things are moving, they're moving quickly. Something's gonna happen today.' So, here we are."

After learning the FBI had new developments indicating another person could be responsible, there was no choice but to let Curtis go.

Brother Jack Curtis says he and his family can now breathe a sigh of relief, knowing Kevin is home.

"We are all just elated today. We're gonna be able to wake up tomorrow, all of us, just a normal day, and we're just super excited and very, very thankful," Jack Curtis said.

As for Kevin, he says his life is now taking a different path as well.

"No matter what kind of activist you are, you can't just go online and state what you feel because it will come back and bite you," he said.

McCoy said one of the reasons why U.S. attorneys rushed to judgment could have been the frequency of these letters being received by the President and Senator Wicker after the Boston Marathon bombing.

However, McCoy adds that she believes the government acted in good faith and did not show malice against her client.

The U.S. attorneys involved with the case have not commented publicly on Paul Kevin Curtis' release.
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