Couple Sickened by Novichok Handled Contaminated Item

Charlie Rowley, Dawn Sturgess described as found foaming at the mouth
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 5, 2018 8:11 AM CDT
Updated Jul 5, 2018 2:07 PM CDT
Police cordon tape hangs surrounding the Queen Elizabeth Gardens park in Salisbury, England, Thursday, July 5, 2018. British officials are seeking clues Thursday in the rush to understand how two Britons...   (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
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(Newser) – The UK on Wednesday confirmed that the two people who lie critically ill in Salisbury District Hospital were exposed to Novichok, the same nerve agent that sickened Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia. The BBC reports the pair are Charlie Rowley, 45, and Dawn Sturgess, 44; Metropolitan Police on Thursday said their exposure came from "handling a contaminated item"—what's unclear is if that item was overlooked following the Skripals' March attack or part of some new batch, though a former member of the British Army's chemical and biological weapons unit tells the Washington Post his understanding is that it is "collateral from the original attack, possibly contained in a syringe or medical container." More:

  • The couple spent Friday in Salisbury, the city where the Skripals were poisoned, before falling ill in an Amesbury home roughly 10 miles away. Hamish De Bretton-Gordon, who is not part of the current investigation, speculated the item could have been tossed in a Salisbury park or nearby river, which is at a low point right now.

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