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Man is charged in 2003 robbery of W.Va. pharmacy

February 09, 2005|by CANDICE BOSELY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Two clerks who worked at a pharmacy when it was robbed in June 2003 recognized the robber after his photograph was printed in a Winchester, Va., newspaper, according to court records.

William Albert Nelson, 40, of 603A Jefferson Ave., Charles Town, W.Va., was arraigned Monday night on one felony count of armed robbery stemming from a robbery that happened June 8, 2003, at the Rite Aid store in Martinsburg.

The case was investigated by officers with the Martinsburg Police Department.

Two women working at the store's pharmacy said a man walked behind the counter - where customers are not allowed - with his hand in his pocket as if he had a gun, police said.

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He told the women to keep working and asked where the store kept its OxyContin, police said. One of the women retrieved a locked box and unlocked it, and the man grabbed the box and took out the bottles, police said.

The man then asked for Percocet. After its location was pointed out, the man grabbed two bottles, police said.

The stolen medication was worth $1,206, police said.

While leaving the store, the man walked backward and asked for a bag. He was given several bags and dropped a few, police said. The robber then left on foot, police said.

A little more than a week later, on June 16, 2003, one of the women said she saw a picture of a man in The Winchester Star who was wanted for two robberies. The other store clerk looked at the picture and also said it was the man who had robbed the store, police said.

Nelson was the man pictured, police said.

Nelson was taken into custody in Virginia and brought to West Virginia to face the robbery charge, according to court records.

He was being held Tuesday night in Eastern Regional Jail on a $50,000 cash-only bail.

Conviction on a charge of armed robbery carries a minimum sentence of 10 years in prison.

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