Police: Prisoner Mailed ‘Powdery Substance’ To Station

Inmate Charged With Mailing

‘Powdery Substance’ To OPD

Kristopher J. Surdis

ONEONTA – An inmate in the state’s Woodbourne Correctional Facility was charged with making terroristic treats after allegedly mailing an envelope full of an “unknown, white powdery substance” to the Oneonta Police Station, according to Acting Police Chief Doug Brenner.

Kristopher J. Surdis, 43, an inmate at the state prison in Sullivan County, was arrested and charged after an investigation stemming from March 2016, when a letter with Mr. Surdis’ return address at Woodbourne Correctional Facility was received by the Oneonta Police Department Records Division.

The records division had denied Surdis’ FOIL requests and served him a cease-and-desist, Brenner said.

The envelope allegedly contained an unknown white powdery substance that spilled into the air and onto personnel when opened, and an interagency investigation was conducted to determine the threat to the health and safety of those exposed.  The threat was later determined to be non-existent and the substance harmless.

The substance was determined to be “carbon-based protein,” according to Brenner.  “We think it was either dried skin or dandruff,” he said.

The letter was received after Surdis had been advised to have no contact with the Oneonta Police Department Records Division.

Surdis was charged with the felonies of Placing a false bomb or hazardous substance in the first degree, class D felony and  Aggravated harassment in the first degree, class E felony, as well as the class A misdemeanor of Aggravated harassment in the second degree.  If convicted, he faces 12 years incarceration.


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