Pharmacy robber handed over knife

An armed pharmacy robber said he meant business, but he handed over the knife he was holding when shop staff asked him to, the Christchurch District Court was told.

The man, David Anthony Foley, described as a 28-year-old father, admitted robbing the Templeton Pharmacy, at a video-link appearance from prison today.

Police said Foley was armed with a knife when he entered the Templeton Pharmacy on April 12 and asked his first victim for some Ritalin or controlled drugs. “I mean business,” he told the staff member.

But when asked to put the knife down on the counter before he would be given the drugs, Foley agreed.

The second victim in the pharmacy moved the knife to another room, and Foley was given a box of Ritalin tablets and a box of Rubifen tablets, both of which are Class B controlled drugs.

Foley then demanded the knife back as it had his fingerprints on it, so it was cleaned by the second victim and wrapped in a towel.

A third victim said Foley could have the knife back, and then he would be escorted out of the pharmacy to keep everyone safe.

Foley left with the knife and two boxes of tablets.

Defence counsel April Kelland said Foley was doing a drug and alcohol course in prison. She said he was a good father, and had been employed, but drugs had got the better of him.

Judge Tom Gilbert withdrew a charge of unlawful possession of drugs, read Foley the first of the three strike warnings for repeat violent offenders, and remanded him in custody for sentencing on August 29 on the armed robbery charge.

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