BURLINGTON, Vt. — A 70-year-old woman accused of manufacturing the deadly toxin ricin and testing it on fellow residents at a Vermont retirement community has pleaded not guilty.

The Burlington Free Press reports that Betty Miller was arraigned on Friday.

Miller, who has an extensive mental health history, was arrested last month after telling investigators she made the ricin at her home at the Wake Robin community in Shelburne because she wanted to “injure herself.” According to a federal complaint, she told investigators she tested the poison’s effectiveness by putting it in residents’ food or beverages. No one became seriously ill.

According to the complaint, she said she made the ricin from castor beans she harvested from plants growing at Wake Robin.

Miller is being held in a Vermont jail.

Information from: The Burlington Free Press, http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.