A man trying to steal cough syrup so he could sell it to teenagers at parties was taken down by a 75-year-old pharmacist, according to the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department.
The would-be burglar wore a surgical mask and carried a plastic toy gun.
He walked into the Cost Less Pharmacy on the Key Peninsula Saturday afternoon to allegedly steal all liquid cough syrup bottles with codeine.
The 21-year-old later told deputies he resells the cough syrup at parties for $100 each, spokesman Ed Troyer said.
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Pharmacy employees recognized the man because he often buys syringes there.
After shopping in the store Saturday morning, he returned just before noon and allegedly tried to steal the cough syrup.
The pharmacist caught him and as the would-be burglar tried to make a break for the back door, the pharmacist tackled him to the ground.
Several customers "dog piled" on top of the would-be burglar and held him until deputies arrived.
Deputies found the man still wearing two surgical masks over his face with torn plastic gloves on his hands.
He told deputies he sneaked behind the counter and was removing items from the shelf when the pharmacist caught him, so he turned to run.
“The suspect thought he was hit on the back of his head with a stick or pipe,” according to the Sheriff’s Department.
That was from the force of the pharmacist.
The would-be burglar was booked into Pierce County Jail on suspicion of first-degree robbery.