Steven Brandenburg
Ozaukee County Sheriff's Office

Former Pharmacist Sentenced To Three Years For Purposely Spoiling COVID-19 Vaccines

A former Wisconsin pharmacist has been sentenced to three years in prison for purposely destroying COVID-19 vaccines.

On Tuesday, 46-year-old Steven Brandenburg received three years in federal prison after pleading guilty in February to two felony counts of attempting to tamper with a consumer product. He initially faced up to 20 years behind bars.

Brandenburg was arrested on December 31st after being fired from Aurora Medical Center in Grafton for leaving 57 vials of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine out for over two nights. The man knew that the vaccines needed to be refrigerated but decided to spoil them because he felt that they were unsafe to use. Brandenburg told authorities that he thought the vaccines would alter recipients’ DNA. He confessed that he returned the vials to the hospital’s refrigerators each morning.

Multiple high-level studies have shown that vaccines are safe for use, and there is no evidence to back up Brandenburg’s beliefs.

In addition to his prison sentence, Brandenburg was ordered to serve three years of supervised release and to pay nearly $83,800 in restitution to the hospital.

At his sentencing, Brandenburg apologized for tainting the vaccines, saying that he didn’t “have the right to make this decision” and that he was “tormented by it daily.”

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