SEBRING - To Jerron Mario Moffitt, authorities say, it was an April Fool's prank: randomly placing envelopes containing a white powder on dozens of vehicles in a hospital parking lot and in mailboxes in his own neighborhood and beyond.
The result: a 14-hour shutdown of Florida Hospital Heartland; an investigation by local, state and federal law enforcement; and a jittery two days for this community 90 miles southeast of Tampa.
Most of the envelopes had a hand-drawn "smiley face" on the outside. Inside was a folded piece of paper bearing the words "define Anthrax" and containing the white powder.
Moffitt, 20, said he even put an envelope in his own mailbox to fool his father, an arrest report states.
Moffitt was arrested Friday night, a day after the powder scare gripped the community. Tests showed the white powder was harmless, although investigators are still trying to identify the substance.
Moffitt was being held today on 79 counts of possession of a hoax weapon of mass destruction, the Highlands County Sheriff's Office said. Each charge carries a prison sentence of up to 15 years. His bail was set at $790,000 on those charges.http://www2.tbo.com/content/2009/apr/04/041344/anthrax-hoax-meant-be-april-fools-prank/news-breaking-yahoo/