Pharmacist charged in attempt to ruin COVID-19 vaccine


In this booking photo provided by the Ozaukee County Sheriff’s Office Monday, Jan. 4, 2021 in Port Washington, Wis. Steven Brandenburg is shown. The Wisconsin pharmacist, accused of intentionally spoiling hundreds of doses of coronavirus vaccine, convinced the world was “crashing down” told police he tried to ruin hundreds of doses of coronavirus vaccine because he felt the shots would mutate people’s DNA, according to court documents released Monday. (Ozaukee County Sheriff via AP)

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin pharmacist accused of trying to spoil dozens of vials of COVID-19 vaccine has been charged with attempted misdemeanor property damage.

Online court records indicate Steven Brandenburg was charged Tuesday in Ozaukee County Circuit Court.

He pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutors have warned more serious charges could follow if tests show the Moderna vaccine doses were ruined.

Investigators believe Brandenburg intentionally removed 57 vials from a refrigerator at Advocate Aurora Health in Grafton.

Detectives say Brandenburg is an admitted conspiracy theorist who thought the vaccines would mutate recipients’ DNA.

The vials contained enough doses to inoculate more than 500 people.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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