Trio arrested in pharmacy robbery

By: Cortney Casey | Sterling Heights Sentry | Published November 27, 2012


Three men suspected of robbing a pharmacy at gunpoint were quickly apprehended Nov. 16, after plainclothes detectives spotted them mid-flight.

According to Sterling Heights police, a female employee of Plumbrook Pharmacy in the 39800 block of Van Dyke, near 17 Mile, was opening the store just after 9 a.m. when the three men confronted her and ordered her onto the floor.

Shortly thereafter, the pharmacist arrived, followed by a female patient from an adjacent medical office, and both received the same treatment.

No one was injured, and there were no shots fired, said Lt. Kevin Reese of the Sterling Heights Police Department.

With the three witnesses on the floor, the suspects reportedly began emptying the pharmacy’s shelves, dumping various medications into a large duffle bag, before fleeing in a vehicle waiting outside.

One of the witnesses supplied police with a description of the getaway car, and two plainclothes detectives — who were already heading southbound on Van Dyke at 17 Mile just north of the pharmacy at the time — spotted the vehicle in “a matter of seconds” after the call went out, said Reese.

Patrol units conducted a traffic stop near 17 Mile and Van Dyke and took the suspects into custody.

“(It was) good police work by everyone involved,” said Reese.

Upon further investigation, police learned that the men had been spotted prior to their arrest in a residential neighborhood behind the pharmacy. A search of the area turned up a duffle bag that contained the stolen medications, plus a handgun. 

“It sounds like what they were attempting to do was conceal the stuff,” with intentions of returning later to retrieve it, said Reese.

The three suspects — Detroit residents Adren Lamar Thimes, 25, Dwayne Sam Hill, 31, and Malvern Albert Parker, 32 — were arraigned on charges of armed robbery and conspiracy to commit armed robbery, both life felonies, before Magistrate Michael Piatek in 41-A District Court Nov. 19.

Thimes’ bond was set at $1 million cash or surety; Hill’s and Parker’s were set at $500,000. According to Reese, all three of the men have prior criminal histories, and Thimes was still on parole for fleeing and eluding.

Thimes and Parker retained an attorney, Christopher Quinn, who could not be reached for comment by press time. Court officials said Hill requested court-appointed counsel, but an attorney had not been entered into the record by press time.

The suspects’ preliminary exams are set for Dec. 3 in front of Judge Stephen Sierawski.