LEE COUNTY, Fla. -- A man is in custody after Lee County deputies said he walked into a CVS in North Fort Myers and demanded medications Thursday afternoon. The man walked into the store in broad daylight just after 12:30 p.m. So what are pharmacies doing to protect themselves?
Ross Webb is a pharmacist at Fort Myers Prescription Shop. He's seen a shortage of certain drugs that people on the street want. Because of that, he said more people are having trouble getting them.
"I expect that this maybe happening more and more often as the shortage gets more critical," said Webb.
In broad daylight, deputies said John Drew, 34, walked into a CVS on 6391 Bayshore Road, demanded medications and left. He didn't have a weapon and was arrested just hours later. Deputies said it serves as a warning for customers making a trip to their local pharmacy.
"You just have to be secure and watch out what you're doing and just be very careful. Especially walking to the pharmacy to the cars," said Webb.
Deputies said people needed to feed their addiction will do just about anything. They suggest if you come face to face with a prescription pill robber, give in because they can be dangerous.
"The people that are coming in and out of the store should just be careful themselves because if they're getting medications like that, you don't know what those people are going to be doing outside the store," said Webb.
"Don't put up a fight, give them what they demand and then let us come in and find them," said Tony Schall, Lee County Sheriff's Office.
Webb said he's seen more pharmacy robberies nationwide. He's had his fair share of people trying to get pills at his shop to fix a high. He's even pulled out a gun before, all in an effort to protect his employees and his customers.
"We've been afraid a couple of times but we carry our own weapons back here plus we automatic alarms for the police department and we have all sorts of preventions here," said Webb.
Deputies also said you never know who might be addicted and you never know at what lengths they'll go to get a fix. To help crack down, you can report illegal drug use in your community to your local law enforcement agency.