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The Daily



07-12-03: Drugstore robbed
The Daily Standard
    Law enforcement officers converged on CVS Pharmacy,1020 N. Main St., shortly before 8:30 p.m. Friday on reports of an armed robbery bearing startling similarity to an unsolved case that occurred at the same location Nov. 21, 2002.
    A male suspect and a female accomplice were taken into custody about 30 minutes later following a traffic stop along U.S. 127 and Ohio 707, north of Celina. Their vehicle reportedly had Indiana license plates.
    Celina Police Chief Dave Slusser would neither confirm nor deny whether the thief had a gun or demanded the drug OxyContin.
    ³There are definite similarities between this robbery and the other one,² Slusser told The Daily Standard before entering the pharmacy. An employee locked the door behind him as six customers who had been inside went to their cars.
    Initial broadcasts on a police scanner indicated authorities should be on the lookout for a man wearing a brown sportcoat, black-rimmed glasses and some kind of hat. The suspect, described as being between 35 and 40 years old, reportedly ran from a side door, across a street and behind the Plaza shopping center. 
    A witness later told police a man fitting the description got into a green, foreign car on East Oak Street after running behind the houses from the area of the drugstore. The man reportedly lay down in the back seat as the vehicle left the area. A woman who had been waiting behind the wheel, also had a large dog in the car.
    Minutes later, an off-duty officer in a minivan reportedly spotted the vehicle traveling northbound on U.S. 127 and followed at a discreet distance until a marked cruiser arrived on the scene.
    Scanner transmissions initially indicated the occupants were a woman and a dog. The man reportedly was found hiding in the backseat.
    The man and woman were taken into custody and placed in separate cruisers bound for the police station. The cruiser containing the male suspect took a detour along the way so that pharmacy employees could identify him as the man who had approached the counter earlier.
    The car was towed to an impound lot while officers sought a search warrant.
    On Nov. 21 last year, a man wearing similar clothing approached the pharmacy counter, brandished a silver or chrome handgun and demanded OxyContin, a narcotic used to treat moderate to severe pain. He also left via a side door.
    A man fitting the description had been seen getting out of a compact station wagon-type vehicle in the CVS parking lot prior to the robbery. A witness indicated the vehicle was blue or gray with a woman at the steering wheel and a large white dog, possibly a husky, in the back seat. A car fitting the description was stopped a short time later. However, the female occupant and her dog were allowed to continue on their way when nothing was found amiss.
    < Staff writer Timothy Cox contributed to this story.


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