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Pharmacy robberies can be tied to drug addiction

State officials said robberies at pharmacies can help contribute to illegal drugs on the streets. (KOKH/Ben Latham)

Police said early Friday morning, three men broke into a Norman Walgreens.

They said the suspects broke open cash registers and were in the pharmacy when police showed up. Major Kevin Foster of the Norman Police Department said police were able to track down and arrest two of the three men who broke into the pharmacy.

"After they ran out the back, we had officers in the back of the business," Foster said. "There was a short foot pursuit where we got one subject, we located another in a car with a female."

The two men and their driver were arrested. A fourth suspect was able to get away.

Mark Woodward with the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics said they have seen cases like this happening more as drug addiction continues.

"How desperate they are to feed their own addiction," Woodward said. "If they can't get them from their doctor, involving prescription fraud, or can't get them on the streets from a street dealer in some cases, they've gone to extreme lengths to rob a pharmacy."

Woodward said if the addiction is bad enough, people will do almost anything to get their drugs. Sometimes when they feel like they can't get a prescription, they will turn to committing robbery.

"Their doctor has weaned them off the pills and are refusing to refill and they're worried about doctor shopping," he said. "Then sometimes they're still desperate and they'll go to the lengths to rob a pharmacy and the employees."

Two of the robbery suspects have been identified as Roderick Errod Guidry, Sr., 38, and Roderick Errod Guidry, Jr., 21. Police said the FBI confirmed the suspects, in Friday's robbery, have been involved in the same kind of robberies at pharmacies in the Dallas area.

Norman police said the store was open at the time and one of the employees called police.

Investigators did not release the names of the drugs taken.

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