Mom turns in pharmacy robbery suspect


BANGOR — The Auburn man charged with robbing an Augusta pharmacy Tuesday was recognized from surveillance footage by two women — his mom and a friend of his father.

Anthony Post, 19, of Auburn made his first court appearance late Thursday afternoon in U.S. District Court in Bangor. He is charged with interference with commerce by robbery.

The CVS pharmacy on Stone Street reported being robbed shortly after 4 p.m. Tuesday, according to court documents.

Post was arrested sometime Thursday in Augusta after the women had called police to say they recognized Post from the surveillance footage released after the robbery, according to court documents.

At his court appearance before U.S. District Judge Margaret Kravchuk, Post agreed to be held without bail until his case is resolved. He did not enter a plea because he has not yet been indicted by a federal grand jury.

According to court documents, the robber walked into the CVS on Tuesday afternoon and handed the pharmacist a note that read: “Quickly & Calmly put All oxycodone in bag If not I have A gun & will start shooting No Scene!”

No weapons were shown during the robbery, according to a previous report.

Post was located Thursday in Augusta at his girlfriend’s apartment as the two were moving out, according to court documents. Post agreed to speak with Augusta police detectives and allegedly confessed to the robbery.

He also told investigators that he had gone into a Walgreens pharmacy in Augusta about 15 minutes before the CVS robbery with the intention of holding it up but “had chickened out,” according to court documents.

Walgreens employees Tuesday provided Augusta police with surveillance footage of a man who had been behaving suspiciously and matched the description of the CVS robber released by investigators, according to court documents.

U.S. Attorney Thomas E. Delahanty II in a press release issued Friday praised the cooperation between the Augusta Police Department and the FBI. Two years ago, Delahanty’s office announced that federal law enforcement authorities would be assisting local agencies in their pharmacy robbery investigations.

“We are going to, in the future, be involved in investigating pharmacy robberies because of the large problem in Maine,” Greg Comcowich, a spokesman for the FBI in Boston said Thursday. “We’re going to work together with local law enforcement because this is a problem.”

Delahanty said that his office works closely with local district attorney’s offices to determine who will handle the prosecution of people arrested in pharmacy robberies.

“There are several criteria used to determine if federal authorities get involved in a pharmacy robbery,” Delahanty said Friday.

One is whether the wholesale value of the drugs stolen is $500 or more, he said. Another is whether it falls under the Hobbs Act, the statute under which Post was charged. The law prohibits interference with interstate commerce. Because CVS is a chain store with locations in many states and most pharmaceuticals are produced outside the state, Post could be charged under the Hobbs Act, Delahanty said.

The CVS robbery was the second in the state in 2013, Department of Public Safety spokesman Stephen McCausland said Tuesday. Maine had 54 pharmacy robberies in 2012, more than double the number in 2011.

The CVS pharmacy on Stone Street was robbed twice in 2012, while a different CVS store in Augusta was held up three times last year.

If convicted, Post faces up to 30 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000.