Hosting the Democratic National Convention puts pressure on any city to ensure that there are no major incidents to mar event. I believe the pressure may be too much for authorities in Denver as their explanations of several recent incidents not only seem overly convenient but rely on the most childlike credulousness on the part of Americans watching the news.
The first of course was the contention of officials that Saleman Abdirahman Dirie, the Somali immigrant to Canada found dead with a pound of cyanide in an expensive hotel room, committed suicide. Today news came out that even Dirie’s family, who have no motive to keep their relative’s name in the news, are disputing the suicide thesis:
OTTAWA – A spokesman for the family of the Ottawa man who died of cyanide poisoning in a Denver hotel room is disputing autopsy findings that the man committed suicide.
“We believe the ruling (is) absolutely nonsensical,” said Omar Jamal, executive director of the U.S.-based Somali Justice Advocacy Center.
Saleman Abdirahman Dirie, 29, was found dead in room 408 of the Burnsley Hotel on Aug. 11 near a jar of sodium cyanide, the crystallized form of the fast-acting poison.
Denver police have since rejected any suggestions Dirie’s death is terrorism-related, calling it an isolated incident. It remains unclear where Dirie obtained the chemical, how much he ingested and how much he possessed.
“We’re done with the investigation now that we’ve got the coroner’s results,” said Det. Sharon Hahn.
But Jamal said his organization is filing a complaint with the Colorado Board of Medical Examiners on behalf of Dirie’s family, and he is looking into ways to appeal the coroner’s findings.
“We feel that there is insufficient evidence to arrive at the conclusion that he was suicidal,” Jamal said.
He said neither the autopsy report nor the police’s investigation explains why Dirie traveled to Denver in the first place.
“If the intention of Mr. Dirie was to commit suicide, he could have done it in Canada,” he said, adding that there are several other questions that remain unanswered, including what the hotel’s surveillance cameras show, whether Dirie had any visitors, whether he had any luggage, where he obtained the cyanide and how he paid for the room.
Indeed. Hotel surveillance cameras have yet to be mentioned by authorities and no one has talked about how he afforded the room in the first place. Denver authorities expect us to believe that a person traveled from Ottowa to Denver to kill themselves? That he somehow purchased a pound of cyanide just to drink a cupful? It strains believability.
Then of course we get the good news that the white powder filled envelope sent to Denver’s McCain headquarters was sent by inmate Marc Harold Ramsey who is described as a prolific writer of threatening letters:
Within hours of the 3 p.m. scare at the Centennial campaign office of Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain of Arizona, authorities announced that the powder was phony and that the writer appeared to be Marc Harold Ramsey.
The 39-year-old has been in jail since September, unable to post the $350,000 bond on charges of felony charges of menacing, harassment and assault on a peace officer, according to the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office.
“He is a prolific writer of threatening letters,” said U.S. Secret Service Agent Malcolm Wiley.
The inmate’s words led at least five McCain staffers in Centennial to rush themselves to the hospital.
Twelve others were evaluated after their office near South Peoria Street and East Arapahoe Road was swarmed and quarantined by local, state and federal authorities.
Minutes after news of the scare in Centennial spread, a McCain campaign worker in Manchester, N.H., noticed an envelope addressed to McCain, handwritten with a return address of Denver.
The office was evacuated, but the letter was later found to have no powder or threat.
The Manchester letter appeared to be unrelated to the Colorado case, investigators in New Hampshire said.
That was mighty fast police work for people who can’t explain why a Somali turned up in their city to poison himself. Thank goodness a man in jail for writing threatening letters signed the letters with his name and that it was mere coincidence that a letter from Denver arrived in New Hampshire the same day.
I don’t know what Ramsey’s story is, but if he’s in jail for writing threatening letters how did he get a letter mailed to McCain’s office containing an unidentified, yet harmless, white powder? Where I’m from people’s letters are checked in the joint before they go out, especially if they have a history of threatening people. But everything is O.K. man, it’s all under control.
Update: It’s being reported that Ramsey is a “terrorist sympathizer” but he is a Muslim convert who goes by the name Akeem Ramsel El. Here’s a copy of the letter he sent to McCain courtesy of Denver’s ABC 7:
IF you are reading this then you are already Dead!
Unless of course you can’t or don’t breathe.
There are numerous substances which are deadly for humans to inhale.
There are just as many time periods for signs of illness to show, by which time it’s to late.
Who expects to develop cancer 40 years after Vietnam?
Only those that knew the risk and side effects of Agent Orange.
DoD, DOW, Diamond Shamrock, U.S. Surgeon General
You’re out of time.
Akeem Ramsel El
Religion of peace indeed. I’m still curious as to why this person was allowed to send a letter to McCain’s office at all? Severe negligence on the prison systems part or something else?