Crime

They broke into 3 Coast pharmacies with sledge hammers, DEA says

Oxycodone, also known by the brand name OxyContin, and other addictive drugs were stolen from four pharmacies before three men were arrested. The burglaries and drug thefts were in Long Beach, Wiggins, Ocean Springs and Pearl River, La.
Oxycodone, also known by the brand name OxyContin, and other addictive drugs were stolen from four pharmacies before three men were arrested. The burglaries and drug thefts were in Long Beach, Wiggins, Ocean Springs and Pearl River, La.

A series of pharmacy burglaries began with a disguised person using a sledge hammer to break in at Long Beach Pharmacy and “low crawling” to a cabinet to steal prescription drugs.

Two other unusual drug store break-ins occurred before DEA Task Force agents and Ocean Springs police discovered a fourth break-in Tuesday. Biloxi police stopped a black Dodge Durango with a Louisiana tag, leading to the arrests of three men from Baton Rouge.

The men stole drugs from the four pharmacies over an eight-week period, a DEA Task Force agent wrote in a criminal complaint filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court.

The agent identified them as Shundrake McKeel, 26; Justin McKeel, 37; and Lamarvin Haynes.

The drugs stolen are Schedule II drugs, which the DEA considers highly addictive — the painkillers oxycodone, hydrocodone, tapentadol and methadone, and dextoamphetamine. The latter’s a stimulant and methadone treats withdrawal symptoms.

A hole in the wall

Video surveillance at Long Beach Pharmacy shows a person spent more than 30 minutes busting a hole in a back wall on Aug. 21, the agent said. The person, covered by clothing from head to toe, left the store at 1:10 am. and ran to a vehicle.

Two or more persons, also covered from head to toe, peeled off the metal on a building to burglarize the Family Drug Mart in Pearl River on Sept. 5.

The Task Force began looking at similarities in pharmacy break-ins and soon learned of another.

Burglars used a sledge hammer to smash in the brick wall at County Discount Pharmacy in Wiggins on Sept. 27.

And the burglary of Coastal Pharmacy in Ocean Springs was reported about 4:33 a.m. Tueseday.

A Biloxi traffic stop

Agents had identified Shundrake McKeel as a suspect, the agent wrote, and learned he drove a black Durango with a Louisiana license plate.

Biloxi police stopped a matching vehicle after the Ocean Springs burglary. Shundrake McKeel got out of the Durango with a white plastic bag of drugs and ran, but police arrested him and the others, the agent said.

Haynes reportedly said he had no knowledge of a crime. Shundrake McKeel said he wouldn’t talk without an attorney. Justin McKeel said he was just riding with them.

They are held pending court action.

Robin Fitzgerald: 228-896-2307, @robincrimenews

  Comments