Police: Suspect robbed Western Ave CVS, obtained drugs from pharmacy

Police are looking for a suspect in connection to robbery at a Western Ave CVS. Police say the suspect fled with pain killers.

ALBANY, NY (WRGB) ALBANY -- Albany Police are still working to track down a masked man who robbed the Western Avenue CVS drug store in broad daylight.

Police say the man was interested in a specific type of drug from the pharmacy counter.

Jason Sanabria witnessed the scene.

“While I was passing through the CVS I saw two or three cop cars,” Sanabria said.

The commotion happened around 10am Thursday as Sanabria was headed to class.

Albany Police Public Information Officer Steve Smith says a masked man targeted the pharmacy dressed in a black coat, baseball cap, and wearing a surgical mask to cover his face.

“The suspect walked around the store, came to the counter with cough syrup, and also passed a note to the pharmacist implying he had a weapon,” Smith said.

Albany Police say the note demanded the pharmacist hand over the narcotic painkiller oxycodone, an addictive opioid. Police say no one in the pharmacy was injured, and that the man fled the scene after the pharmacist handed over pills.

“He didn’t demand money. A lot of people suffer from addiction, this appears to be one of those cases where he was addicted to oxycodone and stole the drugs,” Smith said.

The opioid epidemic has hit home for Sanabria.

“That just hits a sore spot for me, because opiates are really bad in my area,” Sanabria said.

Now, witness to drug-related crime.

“They do anything necessary to get their fix, and need as much help as possible,” Sanabria said.

Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple said he believes 80-90 percent of crime in Albany County has a tie to the opioid crisis.

Police have not made an arrest in the CVS case.

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