Federal prosecutors have charged a Fannin County man with illegal possession of a biological agent, a crime which carries a five-year prison sentence.
William Christopher Gibbs, Morganton, was arrested Feb. 2 after he drove himself to a local hospital in Fannin County, reportedly to seek help for exposure to the ricin, a deadly poison obtained from castor seeds.
It is unclear why Gibbs, 27, had the poison or what he planned to do with it, but his social media profiles indicate he recently had become an adherent of the Church of Creativity. Creativity is a white supremacist, deeply anti-Semitic “religion” that preaches racial warfare.
U.S. Attorney John Horn’s office filed the charges Wednesday. He is being held in Fannin County on state charges of reckless conduct and violation of his probation for a 2010 burglary conviction.
He does not have a lawyer listed as representing him. Federal authorities have declined comment on the case, so it is unclear how Gibbs got the ricin or whether to expect any additional charges.
Carla Hill, a researcher with the Anti-Defamation League, said the Creativity movement exists mostly on the internet as a white supremacist “brand” rather than as a viable, real-world organization. That doesn’t mean they are not dangerous.
“They continue to attract white supremacists, which is the case with this guy,” she said.