April 20, 2018
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Pharmacy robbery suspect denied bail because drugs, weapon remain missing

By Judy Harrison, BDN Staff

BANGOR, Maine — A federal judge Tuesday denied bail to the man charged with robbing a Bingham pharmacy in part because neither the sawed-off shotgun allegedly pointed at employees nor the stolen narcotics have been recovered.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Margaret Kravchuk ordered that James Stile, 55, of Sangerville remained jailed until his case is resolved.

He is being held at the Somerset County Jail.

Kravchuk said she denied Stile’s motion for bail because of the risk he posed to the community due to his possible knowledge of the location of the gun and the drugs, valued at $13,000 wholesale, and because no one had come forward to act as a third-party custodian for Stile.

The judge called the evidence against Stile “overwhelming.” That evidence includes a match of Stile’s DNA to pieces of purple-colored latex gloves found at the crime scene, according to testimony at Tuesday’s bail hearing by Brent McSweyn of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Last week, Stile pleaded not guilty to robbery of controlled substances from a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration-registered pharmacy, use of a firearm in the furtherance of a federal crime of violence, being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition, and manufacturing more than 100 marijuana plants.

Stile allegedly robbed the E.W. Moore and Son Pharmacy at gunpoint about 5:20 p.m. Sept. 12. He reportedly tied up four pharmacy employees with zip ties, then fled with nearly 100 bottles of prescription drugs.

The complaint filed in federal court said that surveillance video showed a lone male enter the pharmacy wearing sunglasses, a dust mask over his face, a light-colored ball cap, a dark-colored windbreaker-type jacket, purple-colored latex gloves, bluejeans and hiking sneakers.

When he entered the pharmacy, Stile pulled a sawed-off shotgun from his pants and a pistol could be seen protruding from a pocket, according to the complaint. When he approached the pharmacy, he climbed over the counter with the shotgun aimed in the direction of the employees.

Stile was arrested the next day at his home, where investigators found more than 150 marijuana plants, according to previously published reports.

Although the shotgun has not been recovered, a .22-caliber pistol believed to be the one visible in the video was found on Stile’s property, McSweyn said Tuesday.

He faces up to 25 years in federal prison on the robbery charge alone. If it is proven that he threatened pharmacy employees with a gun, he faces an additional mandatory minimum of seven years.

On the other federal charges, Stile faces up to 10 years in prison for being a felon in possession of a gun and between five and 40 years for manufacturing more than 100 marijuana plants.

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