Sleuth Without a Badge

Retiree Ed Lake has become obsessed with the anthrax case--and he has a theory about who did it

Ed lake is not a cop. He has no formal training in forensics or any other aspect of law enforcement. But in the past year he has made it his business to master the intricacies of handwriting analysis, envelope technology and the schedule of U.S. mail pickups in and around Princeton, N.J. He can tell you all about cross-contamination, the common misspellings of penicillin and the "pharmaceutical fold" used by chemists for centuries to dispense medicines--and by person or persons unknown to wrap scrawled terror messages around a few billion spores of surprisingly pure anthrax.

Lake, 65, a retired computer specialist,...

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