Tucson Man Arrested in Alleged Chemical Weapons Attack

Contractor accused of unleashing cloud of toxic gas on neighborhood.

May 14, 2011— -- A Tucson, Ariz., man is facing federal charges for allegedly unleashing a chemical weapons attack on a couple.

Todd Fries, also known as Todd Burns, a contractor who owns a cleaning business, was arrested Friday by the FBI, on two counts of producing a chemical weapon, in an alleged attack that created a cloud of toxic gas that forced the evacuation of a northwest Tucson neighborhood.

The FBI and the Pima County Sheriff's Department brought in bomb squad crews to secure the area when they made the arrest, ABC affiliate KGUN-TV in Tucson reported.

The alleged attack occurred in August 2009, at the home of Myles and Karen Levine, who had previously had dead animals left in their yard and had anti-semitic graffiti painted on their home, according to the Arizona Daily Star.

"It feels really good that there's been an arrest made. We've been living pretty much under wraps," Myles Levine told the Daily Star.

Carly Riggs, another neighbor who was made sick by the gas, told KGUN about how the toxic cloud rolled over him as he was getting his morning coffee.

"All of a sudden I took a deep breath and I couldn't hardly breathe, burnt my lungs," Riggs said. "If you've ever been in the military and went into tear gas, it was kind of like that. You just couldn't breathe. Every time you went to breathe it would cut your breath short."

Riggs was hospitalized for seven days as a result of the gas, and at least one other person also had to be hospitalized.

"I really don't know who could hate us that much," Myles Levine told KGUN several days after the attack.

According to the indictment released Friday, Fries could face prison time, though how much is not specified, and he could be fined as much as a quarter of a million dollars.