Threatening Note Passed in Robbery Attempt

Police said a man attempted to rob the CVS pharmacy in downtown Wheeling Thursday morning by passing the pharmacist a handwritten note that claimed he would use a gun to take someone’s life if he did not receive prescription pills.

The man entered the CVS on Market Street around 9 a.m. Thursday and proceeded straight to the pharmacy counter at the rear of the store. He passed the pharmacist a note requesting specific narcotic prescriptions, according to Deputy Police Chief Martin Kimball. The note also said the man had a gun and that “someone would die” if he did not receive the pills.

The pharmacist calmly told the suspect the store did not carry any of the pills and returned the note to him, Kimball said. The suspect promptly turned around and exited the store before heading south on Market Street.

The entire interaction was caught on video, Kimball noted. He said the suspect never presented a gun or made any movements to give the impression he was holding one. The exchange was not confrontational, Kimball said, and may have lasted less than a minute.

“This guy wasn’t agitated, excited or hyper,” Kimball said.

Officers searched the downtown area but were unable to locate the man.

Officers arrived at the scene seven minutes after the suspect entered the store. They still had not located the man Thursday evening. Employees told police the suspect was not a regular customer, and no one recalled seeing him in the store prior to Thursday.

Police described the man as a white male around 30 years old, 5 feet 8 inches tall with a medium build and a blonde goatee. He was wearing gray cargo pants, a black hooded jacket and a dark blue bandanna over his head.