St. Louis woman pleads guilty to federal anthrax hoax charges

A St. Louis woman recently pleaded guilty to federal charges that she sent numerous packages to her perceived enemies that contained, among other things, a white powder that investigators believe was meant to simulate the deadly biological toxin anthrax.

Vennessa V. Bell admitted to the court that she sent numerous packages between 2003 and this year that frequently contained, in addition to the white powder, her own feces, used condoms and used feminine hygiene products, according to

Most of the packages were sent in yellow bubble mailers with Purple Heart postage stamps. They were often decorated with strange writings and collages of pasted-on pornographic pictures.

Bell's motives remain somewhat mysterious, but a former neighbor who received many of the packages told investigators that Bell believed she was being picked on and that her other neighbors were using a “special device” to listen in on her.

Assistant U.S. Attorney John Sauer said that Bell was driven by her perceived grievances with others, reports.

Bell underwent a mental health evaluation and was determined to be competent to stand trial, though as part of the plea, her lawyer and Sauer will ask for three years probation and mental health counseling.

Bell plead guilty to three federal misdemeanor charges of mailing injurious articles, according to