“Drugstore Cowboy” Terrorizes Brooklyn

05/04/2011 8:57 AM |

Surveillance footage of the wanted man
  • Surveillance footage of the wanted man

Matt Dillon An unknown thief has been holding up pharmacies in Sheepshead Bay and Marine Park, demanding powerful pain killers like OxyContin, the New York Times reports. In the last eight weeks, he has hit three non-chain pharmacies a total of five times, most recently on Avenue U in late April, where he also demanded money (for the first time). Because he leaves on foot and hasn’t been found in police sweeps of the area, some suspect he may live nearby—or that he may even be a customer of the places he hits.

The criminal tends to give the pharmacist a bag and demand it be filled before he can count down from ten; customers in the stores have been assaulted, or just terrified. The robberies, which last anywhere from 37 seconds to two minutes, have struck fear into the hearts of local apothecaries: one has hired an armed guard, another is keeping its doors locked, and undercover police are now patrolling the neighborhood’s drugstores. One pharmacist believes the thief is an addict, which means he’s bound to return once his supply runs out.

During one robbery, the thief ran first into a hardware store whose entrance was directly next to the neighboring drugstore’s; he didn’t realize his mistake until he’d made it a few feet into the shop, in his face mask, hood and gloves.

[via Sheepshead Bites]