Arsenic Suspected in Illnesses at Church

From Times Wire Reports

State health officials said that arsenic probably was the cause of several illnesses at a church gathering and that it may have contributed to the death of a 78-year-old man.

State Health Director Dora Anne Mills said a preliminary analysis identified arsenic as “a probable causative agent” in Sunday’s outbreak after services at the Gustaf Adolph Lutheran Church in northern Maine.

Five people remained hospitalized Tuesday.

The church members had shared food and beverages, and several reported that the coffee tasted funny.


Arsenic is common in ground water in Maine.