Man who poured bleach on food in California also struck stores in Arizona, AG says

Jared Gilmour

A man facing charges for dumping bleach on food and drinks at retail stores across California is in even more legal trouble — in another state.

David Lohr, who was arrested on federal food tampering charges this year in the San Francisco Bay Area, has been indicted on similar charges by a grand jury in Arizona, the state’s attorney general announced in a news release on Thursday.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said Lohr is accused of tampering with food on the shelves at seven stores across the Phoenix metropolitan area, including in Tempe, Scottsdale and Chandler. Prosecutors said Lohr dumped bleach and hydrogen peroxide on the merchandise.

“It is believed the tampered food was discovered prior to anyone consuming the items,” prosecutors said. “No individuals have reported any illness associated with the consumption of the tampered items.”

Lohr faces 10 felony counts in Arizona, including one count of criminal damage and nine of adding poison to food, drink or medicine, according to prosecutors.

Man dumped bleach on shrimp, beer, ice and more in stores across California, FBI says

Previously, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office charged Lohr with criminal damage following an October 2018 arrest — but after Lohr’s release he went to California, where he was arrested in February 2019 by the FBI, according to prosecutors.

That arrest came after Lohr was suspected of striking at supermarkets across Northern and Southern California, where bleach was mysteriously turning up on ice, food and drinks in freezer aisles and refrigerators from December 2018 to January 2019, according to the FBI.

Once he was arrested at a bus stop outside San Jose, Lohr was charged with tampering and attempting to tamper with consumer products in Los Angeles federal court, the FBI said in a news release in February.

“Lohr is currently in federal custody,” Arizona prosecutors said Thursday. “Once his federal case concludes, he will be transferred back to Arizona to answer for his state charges.”

The FBI noted in a complaint supporting the earlier warrant for Lohr’s arrest that bleach can cause a number of serious health problems in those overexposed to it, including diarrhea, vomiting, skin troubles and nausea.

Some material in this story appeared in a previous article by the author.