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Grand jury adds new federal charges in July Walgreen's robbery

Grand jury adds new federal charges in July Walgreen's robbery

August 17th, 2018 by Bob Watson and Jeff Haldiman in Local News

A new federal grand jury indictment added charges against three Indiana men who already were charged in the July 25 armed robbery of the Walgreen's pharmacy, 2002 Missouri Blvd.

The seven-count indictment replaced a criminal complaint filed the day of the robbery, and named Jerome Scott King, 19, of Speedway, Indiana, and Raymond Allen Craig, 20, and Daijahn Antwan Reed,19, both of Indianapolis.

The indictment alleges King, Craig and Reed committed an armed robbery July 25, when they pointed a loaded firearm at two Walgreen's employees and tied one employee's hands behind his back with zip-ties.

The original Jefferson City Police report said the robbers entered the store wearing surgical masks and rubber gloves to conceal their identities.

After tying the cashier's hands with the zip-ties, they forced him back to the pharmacy — then jumped over the counter and ordered the pharmacist to give them prescription drugs. The three then fled the store and ran to a vehicle waiting behind the business.

The federal indictment Thursday alleged the men stole $9,264 worth of drugs, including more than 3,000 oxycodone/acetaminophen tablets.

In addition to the robbery, King, Craig and Reed each are charged with one count of using a firearm during a crime of violence, for allegedly brandishing a Smith & Wesson 9mm handgun.

The new charges in the federal indictment including King, Craig and Reed being charged together in one count of committing an armed robbery that involved the theft of a controlled substance.

They are charged together in another count of conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and in one count of possessing oxycodone with the intent to distribute.

The original Jefferson City Police report said officers went to Walgreen's just after midnight July 25 in response to a robbery-in-progress call.

According to an affidavit filed in support of the original federal criminal complaint, the city officers arrived as King, Craig, Reed and another person ran out of the business.

Three of the four men fled the scene in a vehicle. Officers attempted to conduct a traffic stop on the vehicle, the affidavit said, but King — who was the driver — led officers on a pursuit eastbound on U.S. 54.

Missouri Highway Patrol troopers deployed spike strips at U.S. 54 and Routes AA/OO.

King hit the spikes, slowed down and then went out of control, eventually going off the highway and through a ditch before crashing into the front yard of a residence at Platinum Road and Jazel Lane.

King and Craig ran from the vehicle, fled into nearby woods but were apprehended.

The third man was not apprehended and remains unidentified, the U.S. Attorney's office noted in its news release announcing the new indictment.

Meanwhile, about 4:15 a.m. that Wednesday, Jefferson City police got a call from a witness who said a man had knocked on his door and asked to use his phone.

The witness allowed the man to do so and reported the man told him he was from Indianapolis and admitted to robbing Walgreen's.

The witness told police they could find the man on the roof of O'Reilly Auto Parts, 1010 Missouri Blvd., and officers then went to the business and arrested Reed, just before 4:30 a.m.

The witness identified Reed as the man who had used his phone and admitted to the robbery.

Authorities said Reed was the suspect who had been left behind when King, Craig and the still-unidentified man fled from Walgreen's as police arrived.

According to the original federal court documents, King first told authorities he did not know a robbery was planned, but when he saw one of his three companions put a mask over his face before going into the store, "he assumed that criminal activity was going to occur."

However, King later told authorities he had entered Walgreen's first, to conduct surveillance before the robbery, telling Craig how many people were inside the business.

Authorities reported last month when they recovered a 9mm handgun that was used in the robbery, they found it had been stolen from Indianapolis.

As usual, Wednesday's U.S. Attorney's news release cautioned the charges contained in the indictment "are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence."

Supervisory Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael S. Oliver is prosecuting the case in federal court, and Jefferson City's Police Department is credited with the case investigation.