Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Hatboro teen allegedly sent ricin-laced birthday card to rival, according to reports

Helman allegedly told a co-worker at the Target department store in Warrington that he´d sent a poisonous scratch-and-sniff birthday card to the boyfriend of Helman´s ex-girlfriend, according to a police complaint. (Facebook)
Helman allegedly told a co-worker at the Target department store in Warrington that he'd sent a poisonous scratch-and-sniff birthday card to the boyfriend of Helman's ex-girlfriend, according to a police complaint. (Facebook)

A heavily-armed SWAT team descended on a Byberry Road home in Hatboro this afternoon and took a teenage man into custody for allegedly mailing someone a deadly poison made popular recently by the TV show "Breaking Bad," according to reports.

The suspect, identified by the Bucks County Courier Times as Nicholas Todd Helman, of the 100 block of Byberry Road, was arrested without incident, though not without a large show of force and much precautions.

Helman allegedly told a co-worker at the Target department store in Warrington that he'd sent a poisonous scratch-and-sniff birthday card to the boyfriend of Helman's ex-girlfriend, according to a police complaint, the Courier-Times reported.

Bucks County authorities are leading the criminal investigation because the birthday card was sent to a home in Warminster.

The deadly substance allegedly rubbed onto the birthday card has been identified by police as ricin, an often-fatal poison that played a central role in the wildly popular show "Breaking Bad," which chronicled the life of a drug kingpin in New Mexico.

Police also told the paper that sodium hydroxide and castor beans, two ingredients integral to the use of ricin, were allegedly recovered from Helman last week. He was initially charged with harassment March 7. But new, more serious charges are pending, reports said.

A preliminary test on the birthday card allegedly showed ricin was used.


Contact Brian X. McCrone at 215-854-2267 or bmccrone@philly.com. Follow @brianxmccrone on Twitter.

Contact the Breaking News Desk at 215-854-2443; BreakingNewsDesk@philly.com. Follow @phillynews on Twitter.

Brian X. McCrone PHILLY.COM
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