Oct. 5, 2014 By Christian Murray
The police sent in more than a dozen plain clothes cops into the Sunnyside commercial district following two armed robberies at local drug stores early last month.
The strategy led to an arrest of a Sunnyside man when the third Sunnyside pharmacy was targeted.
The first robbery took place at Greenpoint Pharmacy, located at 40-26 Greenpoint Avenue, on Sept 2, when a masked man displayed a gun, and demanded Vicodin, before fleeing with Oxycodone. The second incident occurred on Sept 5 at Family Pharmacy, 45-60 43rd Street, when the masked perpetrator showed a gun and took off with prescription drugs.
“We sent in about a dozen plain clothes [officers] to the area,” said Captain Brian Hennessy, the commanding officer at the 108 precinct, after the second incident. The officers were there to monitor the pharmacies in the neighborhood.
“With two [robberies] taking place so close to each other, we knew there was a good chance he would hit the area again,” Hennessy said.
Therefore, when a perpetrator went into Amazon Pharmacy, located at 43-10 Queens Blvd, on Sept 11 with a knife and demanded prescription drugs the police were in the area.
The police received a 911 call with a description of the suspect and several officers were in the neighborhood to search for him.
The perpetrator, Patrick McNamara, ran across Queens Boulevard and was arrested by Police Officer John Miszuk, a plain-clothes officer, who tracked him down just two blocks from the drug store.
McNamara, 37, a Sunnyside resident was then identified by a witness.
The police, however, have not been able to make an arrest on the first two robberies since the suspect was wearing a mask and was hard to identify. However, Hennessy noted, that there have been no drug store robberies since.
McNamara was arrested on a variety of charges, such as robbery, criminal possession of a weapon and possession of a controlled substance.