FBI: Suspect of Meijer vitamin tampering calls it a ‘drug induced bad decision’

Posted at 9:09 PM, Sep 03, 2014
and last updated 2014-09-03 22:04:08-04

KALAMAZOO, Mich. – A 35-year-old man from Richland is facing federal charges for allegedly tampering with vitamins at several Meijer stores in West Michigan.

It’s a story FOX 17 first told you about weeks ago, six different Meijer stores in Allegan, Kalamazoo, and Calhoun counties reportedly had tampered packages of vitamins on store shelves.

The alleged crime is outlined in a 19-page criminal complaint filed by a special agent with the FBI.

The complaint said a Meijer detective was able to spot Brian Conover on surveillance video returning the alleged tampered vitamins for a gift card from the retailer.

The special agent said inside those tampered bottles were walnuts, cat food, raisin and even other prescription pills.

A total of 19 tampered packages were found on the shelves of Meijer stores.

According to the criminal complaint Conover moved from Richland to Minnesota on Aug. 16 to attend college.  The FBI said they spoke with Conover’s mother who said he was going to study substance abuse counseling and took vitamins regularly.

His mother also allegedly told the special agent that her son had ‘gender identity issues’ and ‘undiagnosed mental issues.’

The FBI also said they spoke with Conover’s brother who described him as a ‘scammer’ but said he would never hurt anyone and likely just wanted free vitamins.

In the complaint the special agent said Conover repeatedly dodged police attempts to speak with him.  The special agent said Conover would eventually write an email in which he said, “I am in no way a terrorist or am I out to hurt anyone at anytime.  I am a poor college student that made some drug induced bad decisions.”

The FBI is charging Conover with federal tampering.