APD searching for man accused of aggravated robbery at pharmacies
Austin police seek the public's assistance finding a man who allegedly robbed various pharmacies for drugs at gunpoint.
Police said all of the incidents happened in July. The man, who can be seen in surveillance footage, approaches the pharmacy and demands controlled drugs while armed.
The suspect is described as a white man in his 20s to 30s. He's about 5-foot-8 with black hair and a recently shaved mustache.
APD said the following locations have been robbed by the suspect:
17-1841690 – Randalls, 5311 Balcones, July 3, 2017, 20:44
17-1841715 – CVS, 3569 Far West Blvd., July 3, 2017, 21:02
17-1890197 – Walgreens, 11724 Research Blvd., July 8, 2017, 02:27
17-2021460 – Walgreens, 5819 Burnet Rd., July 21, 2017, 18:29
17-2070357 – Walgreens, 4501 Guadalupe St., July 26, 2017, 07:26
This case remains under investigation by APD Robbery detectives. Anyone with information is asked to call the Robbery tip line at (512) 974-5092.
Austin Travis County EMS credits the hard work of law enforcement officers for preventing a surge that's now plaguing other cities nationwide.
"The community has been an invaluable asset in helping us identify numerous individuals," said APD Detective Thomas Howard.
"It's important that we find this gentleman before it escalates and someone gets hurt or killed," Howard added.
But catching criminals wanted on drug related charges has another benefit.
The fewer drugs that make it to the street, the fewer people get sick or die from overdoses.
ATCEMS Commander Mike Benevides says he thinks he knows why.
"We credit our law enforcement partners with the Austin Police Department and Austin Travis County Sheriff's Office for all the investigative work and everything they've done in advance."
He says despite an increase in prescription drug abuse nationwide, "We've received no intelligence or any kind of indicator from our front line personnel that we're seeing anything out of the ordinary regarding opioid overdoses."
Howard says his unit isn't solely responsible, adding asking the public for help is key to capturing thieves and traffickers time and time again.