SKOWHEGAN — A week after the first pharmacy robbery of 2017, police are still searching for the person responsible for the hold-up at the Madison Avenue Rite Aid.

Last week, police announced Damien Towers, 26, of Skowhegan, as a suspect in the Jan. 9 robbery.

Skowhegan Police Department Detective Katelyn Nichols said Monday that an arrest warrant has been issued for Towers. She said police have established contact with Towers through another person, but at this point police “do not know his exact location but are investigating all leads we receive to this case.”

Towers allegedly entered the pharmacy on 225 Madison Ave. and handed the pharmacist a note demanding prescription drugs. According to surveillance footage from the store, the suspect left on foot.

Another person, described as a “person of interest” who was driving a tan Honda sedan, was interviewed by authorities and released, according to a police news release from the afternoon of Jan. 9. Towers was identified by a witness at the scene, and his name was released on Jan. 11.

No weapon was displayed and no one was injured, police said, although it wasn’t known whether the man was armed or not.

Maine State Police were involved in the initial search for Towers. Spokesman Stephen McCausland said Monday state police assisted the investigation early on, but said it is primarily a Skowhegan Police Department case. He said he was not aware of any new developments in the case other than the name of the suspect had been released.

He said all other law enforcement agencies in the state have been made aware of who Skowhegan is looking for.

Towers was arrested in 2010 for theft by unauthorized taking or transfer. He was convicted and sentenced to three years in prison with all but 60 days suspended and two years of probation. He was ordered to pay $2,550 in restitution.

The suspect in the pharmacy robbery was described by police as a man with a goatee in his 20s or 30s, about 6 feet tall, weighing about 175 pounds and wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, baggy blue jeans and tan work boots. Towers is described in the news release as having brown hair, brown eyes and a goatee.

The same Skowhegan Rite Aid was robbed Oct. 29, 2014. In that case, the store at 225 Madison Ave. was held up at 3:06 p.m. by a robber who demanded drugs from the pharmacy and threatened to use force in a note. The robber in that heist, Jason Mitchell Walsh, then 32, was taken into custody a short time later after he was found about a mile away from the pharmacy. He was later convicted of robbery and sentenced to 10 years in prison with all but four years suspended and three years of probation. He was ordered to pay $857 in restitution.

Pharmacy robberies in Maine have declined the past few years from a record 56 pharmacy robberies in 2012. The numbers have plunged, according to data from the Maine State Police and the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency, to 13 in 2013, 20 in 2014, eight in 2015 and just five in 2016.

In another attempted pharmacy robbery recently, a Clinton man was arrested on a charge of attempting to rob Dirigo Drug in Clinton by placing a shotgun barrel on the counter and telling the pharmacist the “Maine mafia” was going to kill his family if he didn’t get the drugs. The man, Dana Bradford, 36, did not get the drugs and was arrested at the pharmacy on Main Street.

Colin Ellis — 861-9253

[email protected]

Twitter: @colinoellis

filed under: