A former Georgetown University student who manufactured ricin pleaded guilty Monday to possessing the deadly poison in his dorm room — a turn of events prosecutors suggest might have been inspired by the TV show “Breaking Bad.”
Daniel Milzman, 19, of Bethesda pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the District to a charge of unregistered possession of a biological agent or toxin and faces up to two years in prison when he is sentenced Nov. 10.
Prosecutors said Milzman met a friend who was a resident adviser at the university on March 17 and showed him a double-wrapped plastic bag containing an off-white powdery substance. He told the friend that the bag contained ricin and said he had made it over four days while on a school break.
The friend asked Milzman if he intended to use the ricin on another undergraduate student with whom he had a relationship, prosecutors said, adding that Milzman simply shrugged.
Milzman was arrested early the next morning and has been in jail since. Prosecutors said he told investigators that he intended to use the ricin — which, they say, could have been lethal to a person weighing 220 pounds if inhaled or injected — on himself.
The prosecutors noted that detectives confirmed Milzman had been watching episodes of “Breaking Bad,” a show about a terminally ill chemistry teacher who produces methamphetamine. Prosecutors said that in “approximately 13 of the episodes, ricin was used as a weapon to injure or kill someone.”