Man accused of tampering with food items at Target speaks out

PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- A man accused of tampering with food products at Target stores in the Valley is speaking out.

The suspect, 48-year-old David C. Lohr, was arrested on Tuesday outside a Target store near 48th Street and Ray Road in Ahwatukee, an East Valley suburb of Phoenix, where reports of an odor prompted a HAZMAT response that afternoon.

According to a statement released by Target officials late Tuesday afternoon, there was potential tampering of frozen pizzas, ice cream, and fresh beef, pork, and chicken products at the following Target stores, including the store in Ahwatukee:

According to authorities, Lohr poured Hydrogen Peroxide into store freezers, filled with food for sale. Chandler Police records indicate the incident has happened at least three different times, at a Target store on Frye Road.

Lohr spoke out from jail Thursday afternoon. The man, who claims he owns a roofing company in the Houston area, said he is not from Arizona, but was in the Valley on vacation.

"I didn't do anything wrong," said Lohr, in a phone interview. "I committed no crime. Absolutely no crime."

Lohr was asked about the pouring of chemicals, and offered a strange explanation that he was trying to remove "invisible chemicals" from the freezer case.

"Because stores security is using invisible chemicals," said Lohr. "It was one bottle of Hydrogen Peroxide. It was off their shelf from the Target. It makes the chemicals go away. I put it in the bottom of the cooler, so it was not in the food. It was not on top of the food in any way, so it had no contact with any food."

When asked whether he was planning to buy certain items, Lohr ended the interview.

"At this point, the conversation is over," said Lohr. "That's not a real question."

Lohr did say he had not brought up his concerns with Target beforehand. According to court documents, Lohr has been charged with a count of adding poison or other harmful substance to food to be taken by a human being, which is a felony. He is being held on a $10,000 cash-only bond, and is due by in court in early November.