On Thursday, Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist charged Scott Barnes with three counts of robbery in the first degree, assault in the second degree and eluding the police for robbing three Walgreen pharmacies at gunpoint in Graham and Puyallup.
“When the pursuit of drugs results in violence, we are going to hold defendants fully accountable,” said Prosecutor Mark Lindquist. “These were dangerous robberies, followed by a dangerous chase.”
On June 28, 2012, and Aug. 17, 2012, Barnes, 28, entered two different Walgreens stores in Puyallup and robbed the pharmacies of narcotics. Victims were ordered at gunpoint to comply with his demands. The defendant escaped through fire exit doors on both occasions.
On Feb. 13, 2013, the defendant entered a Walgreens store in Graham, jumped the counter, and pointed his gun at one of the pharmacists, demanding that he get to his knees. The defendant proceeded to open locked cabinets and take bottles of narcotics. He left through the back fire exit door. The Walgreens Manager observed the defendant get into a vehicle and flee the scene. A description of the suspect vehicle was reported to law enforcement.
Pierce County Sheriff deputies observed the suspect vehicle and pursued it. The defendant drove through red lights, in heavy traffic, and at speeds of 80 miles per hour. Officials used stop sticks to flattened the defendant’s tires. As the tires deflated and shredded, the defendant continued to drive recklessly, running cars off the road. Eventually the car came to a stop, and the defendant was arrested.
The defendant admitted to committing the three robberies in Pierce County and one uncharged robbery at a Walgreens store in King County. The investigation is ongoing and additional charges may follow.
The defendant was arraigned Thursday in Pierce County Superior Court and pleaded not guilty. Bail was set at $500,000. His next court appearance is March 1, 2013.
Charges are only allegations and a person is presumed innocent unless he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.