(Covers information from the S.D. Perry novels)
Fort Worth Bugler, October 18, 1998
POSSIBLE CONSPIRACY BY CITY EMPLOYEES IN RACCOON TRAGEDY
FORT WORTH, TX - New evidence uncovered by cleanup crews in Raccoon City, PA, indicates that the "Raccoon syndrome," the disease responsible for the majority of the 7200 deaths that have occurred in Raccoon as of this writing, may have been unleashed upon the unsuspecting populace by Raccoon Police Chief Brian Irons and several members of the Special Tactics and Rescue Squad (S.T.A.R.S.).
At a press conference held early yesterday evening by FBI spokesman Patrick Weeks, NDC Director Terrence Chavez, and Dr. Robert Heiner - called in by Umbrella team leader Dr. Ellis Benjamin - Weeks revealed that there is strong circumstantial evidence that the disaster in Raccoon was the result of a terrorist act that went horribly wrong. The subsequent fires that have nearly wiped out the small city may have been an attempt by Irons or one of his accomplices to cover up the disastrous effects of the spill.
According to Weeks, several documents were found in the wreckage of the RPD building that implicate Irons as the ringleader of a conspiracy to take hostage the Umbrella chemical plant on the outskirts of the city. Allegedly, Irons was furious with city officials over the suspension of the S.T.A.R.S. in late July for their mishandling of a multiple murder investigation - the now well-documented cannibal slayings that took the lives of eleven people early last summer. The Raccoon S.T.A.R.S. were suspended after a helicopter crash in the last week of July that claimed the lives of six team members. The five surviving S.T.A.R.S. members were suspended without pay after evidence suggested drug or alcohol abuse in connection to the crash - and while Irons publicly advocated the suspension of his elite squad, the documents found indicate that Irons meant to threaten Mayor Devlin Harris and several City Council members with a spill of extremely volatile and dangerous chemicals unless certain financial demands were met. Weeks went on to say that Irons had a history of emotional instability, and that the documents - correspondence between Irons and an accomplice - revealed a plan by Irons to extort ransom from Raccoon and then flee the country. The accomplice is named only as "C.R.," but there are also references to "J.V.," "B.B.," and "R.C." - all initials for four of the five suspended S.T.A.R.S.
Said Terrence Chavez, "Assuming these documents are accurate, Irons and his crew had planned to storm the Umbrella plant at the end of September, which would correspond exactly to the timeline described by Dr. Heiner for the Raccoon syndrome to achieve full amplification. We're currently operating under the assumption that the takeover did take place, and that an unexpected accident occurred with cataclysmic results. At this time, we don't know if Mr. Irons or any of the S.T.A.R.S. are still alive, but they are wanted for questioning. We've released a national APB and all of our international airports and border patrols have been alerted. We urge anyone with information relating to this case to come forward."
Dr. Heiner, a renowned microbiologist as well as an associate member of Umbrella's Biohazardous Materials Division, stated that the exact mix of chemicals released in Raccoon may never be known. "It's obvious that Irons and his people didn't know what they were handling - and with Umbrella continuously developing new variations of enzyme syntheses, bacterial growth mediums, and viral repressers, the lethal compound was almost certainly an accidental aggregation. With the possible combinations of materials numbering in the millions, the odds of duplicating the Raccoon syndrome mix are astronomical."
The S.T.A.R.S. national director wasn't available for comment, but Lida Willis, regional spokesperson for the organization, has gone on record as saying that they "are shocked and saddened" by the disaster, and would devote every available agent to the search for the missing S.T.A.R.S. team members, as well as for any contacts they might still have within the network. Ironically, the documents were found by one of Umbrella's search teams...