Pharmacy burglar gets away with single bottle
By Graham Kates
Police are looking for the “frazzled” man in his late teens or early 20s who broke into Hudson Parkway Pharmacy, at 5700 Mosholu Ave., early in the morning on May 31.
The suspect gained access to the building by first using an aluminum bat to break a rooftop skylight before punching a hole through drywall to enter the store, according to police.
Surveillance video of the suspect from within the pharmacy reveals a burglar who police said appeared to be a novice in search of drugs.
“It was an amateur job the way he broke in, you could see on the video that he was really nervous. He was in and out,” said Capt. Kevin Burke, commander of the 50th Precinct.
Capt. Burke added that most pharmacy burglars spend time looting their targets’ valuable wealth of prescription medications, but the Hudson Parkway culprit took just one container of Adderall — a drug to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder — and no money.
That’s one reason police don’t think the burglary is connected to last August’s break-in at DJ Drugs on Riverdale Avenue, in which thieves stole approximately $32,000 worth of goods, including a stash of pharmaceuticals, police said.
“You could see he was frazzled by the alarm … he probably had a drug habit that he needed to fuel,” Capt. Burke said.
Pharmacy robberies rose 81 percent nationally between 2006 and 2010, according the United States Drug Enforcement Agency. In New York State, the number rose from two in 2006 to 28 in 2010.
Police approached security officials at both Manhattan College and the College of Mount Saint Vincent with the suspect’s image, taken from surveillance video. The man, who looks college-aged, was wearing all black clothes, including gloves, but his face was uncovered beneath brown hair parted to one side. Officials at neither school recognized him.
Capt. Burke said community affairs and anti-crime officers have visited other local pharmacies to warn owners about the burglary. While the suspect didn’t seem professional, addiction could drive him to attempt other similar thefts, Capt. Burke said.