CARIBOU, Maine — A Limestone man and a Bangor woman were arrested Sunday in connection with an armed robbery that morning at the Rite Aid pharmacy in which $2,500 worth of prescription painkillers were stolen.
The pair also drove off with $1,000 in merchandise — mostly jewelry and high-end liquor — before they were apprehended a short time after they left the Bennett Drive store, Caribou Police Chief Michael Gahagan said Monday.
Shayne Ellis, 30, of Limestone and Amy Geroux, 24, of Bangor both face charges of armed robbery, theft of scheduled drugs and aggravated criminal mischief, Gahagan said.
Ellis — who reportedly pushed to the ground a manager who was trying to stop him from leaving — also was charged with assault and violation of the conditions of his release from a prior arrest in the Brewer area, Gahagan said. Information about charges related to the previous arrest was not immediately available Monday afternoon.
Gahagan said the robbery in Caribou was captured on surveillance video and witnessed by a retired U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent, who provided detailed descriptions of the suspects.
Gahagan said additional charges could be filed as the investigation unfolds.
After leaving the store with the drugs, Ellis reportedly realized that he had forgotten the cartload of merchandise near the pharmacy section inside the store and went back in to get it, Gahagan said. He said the suspects loaded the items into their vehicle and left.
As of late Monday afternoon, both suspects remained at the Aroostook County Jail in Houlton, a jail official confirmed.
Gahagan said bail initially was set at $100,000 cash for Ellis and $75,000 cash for Geroux. After a court appearance on Monday, however, bail was reduced to $2,500 cash or $25,000 surety for Ellis and $1,000 cash or $10,000 surety for Geroux.
According to Gahagan, the robbery occurred shortly before 11:25 a.m. Sunday, when the pair allegedly entered the pharmacy and filled a cart with merchandise, namely jewelry, several Jagermeister party buckets and bottles of high-end liquor, including Wild Turkey bourbon and Johnnie Walker Black Label, a brand of 12-year-old scotch.
Ellis allegedly then approached the pharmacist demanding OxyContin and claimed he was armed, Gahagan said. No weapon was found in his possession, the chief said.
After the pharmacy alerted police to the robbery, the vehicle the suspects were traveling in was stopped within minutes near the Houlton Farms Dairy just up the street by Caribou officers and a state game warden, Gahagan said.
The stolen drugs and merchandise, which were found in the vehicle, were recovered.
The Maine State Police and the Maine Warden Service assisted in the investigation.