POLICE BEAT

Portland police seeking Rite Aid robber; fake pipe bomb found in parking lot

Posted Oct. 25, 2011, at 8:50 p.m.
Last modified Oct. 26, 2011, at 8:07 a.m.
Portland Rite Aid surveillance shot
Courtesy photo
Portland Rite Aid surveillance shot
Portland Rite Aid surveillance shot
Courtesy photo
Portland Rite Aid surveillance shot

PORTLAND, Maine — Police are on the lookout for a man who entered the Rite Aid Pharmacy on Forest Avenue demanding drugs but who left before receiving any.

The robbery occurred about 12:50 p.m. Tuesday, when a white male entered the pharmacy, located at 701 Forest Ave., and handed the pharmacist a note demanding prescription drugs, Portland police Lt. Gary Rogers said in a news release.

After waiting a few moments for the pharmacist to return, the suspect left the pharmacy on foot without the drugs, Rogers said. He last was seen heading toward Ocean Avenue.

No one was injured during the robbery, Rogers said.

The suspect is described as 5 feet 8 inches to 5 feet 10 inches tall, weighing about 160 pounds and in his 30s. He was wearing a tan baseball cap, eyeglasses, a light-colored fleece jacket, jeans and white sneakers.

Police brought tracking dogs to the area but were unable to find the robber. They did, however, find a suspicious device in the pharmacy’s parking lot, Rogers said.

The device consisted of a foot-long pipe with electrical tape and plastic tubing. The police department’s hazardous devices unit examined the device and determined it was inert. It was not immediately clear if the device was connected to the robbery.

The robbery remains under investigation. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Portland Police Department at 874-8533. Information may be left anonymously. To “Text a Tip,” mobile phone users should text the keyword “GOTCHA” plus their message to 274637 (CRIMES). Anonymous tips also can be submitted via the police department’s website at www.portland-police.com, clicking ” Submit an Anonymous Crime Tip” and by calling 874-8584.

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