St. Charles police are investigating a brazen robbery that began with a phone call to a pharmacy warning employees there was a gunman in the store watching them and they should place drugs in a bag in the pharmacy’s pickup window, where someone then came and grabbed it.
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The Monday night drug heist occurred a little more than 21 hours after a similar robbery at a Naperville Walgreens, where Oxycodone was the targeted drug.
St. Charles police identified the drug stolen in the heist there only as a controlled substance.
In a release issued Thursday, the St. Charles Police Department said officers were dispatched to , at 9:35 p.m. Monday upon a report of a “robbery just occurred.”
Pharmacy personnel told officers that a male called the pharmacy telephone and indicated he had a companion with a gun in the store who was watching Walgreens personnel. The caller instructed the victim to put pills containing a controlled substance into a bag and place it into the store’s pickup window. The bag then was picked up by an accomplice, police said.
St. Charles police did not identify the controlled substance.
The robbery was very similar to one at another Walgreens, this one in Naperville, in which the targeted drug was Oxycodone.
Naperville police Sgt. Lou Cammiso said Thursday afternoon that the Walgreens at 87th and Washington was hit about 12:06 a.m. Monday. As happened in the St. Charles heist, Cammiso said a male called the pharmacy and instructed the employees to “get all the Oxy” — short for Oxycodone — and put it into a bag, which they were to place in the pharmacy’s pickup window, saying “ ‘or I’m going to hurt you’ or something like that,” Cammiso said.
There was no mention of a gunman in the store in the Naperville robbery, however.
Cammiso said the employees followed the instructions and then saw a white male of undetermined age pick up the bag and walk away from the store.
He said the description of the individual lacks detail — he was wearing a dark, long-sleeve coat, perhaps green. He also was wearing what witnesses described as an “old-man-style” hat with ear flaps, which likely prevented the witnesses from seeing the guy’s hair color, Cammiso said.
A police K-9 unit searched the area afterward but without success. Cammiso said the pharmacy’s security video was not helpful.
Cammiso acknowledged the robbery was very unusual, and Naperville police were surprised when a second, similar robbery was reported in St. Charles.
In St. Charles, police are reviewing security video and are working with Walgreens security on the investigation. No one was hurt in the incident.
The U.S. National Library of Medicine says Oxycodone is “used to relieve moderate to severe pain. Oxycodone is in a class of medications called opiate (narcotic) analgesics. It works by changing the way the brain and nervous system respond to pain.”