Walgreens Hopes To Thwart Pill Thieves

The pace behind the counter at any Walgreens pharmacy is quick and speedy, but starting today, when it comes to certain drugs, the brakes are being applied.

"Walgreens has expanded the use of C-2 time delay safes for our pharmacies across the state of Oklahoma," said Walgreens' Loss Prevention Manager Mike Schaeffer.

The safes will contain the drugs that thieves routinely steal from pharmacy after pharmacy.

"The quickest way for these individuals to get this is to just walk into one of these pharmacies and demand it," said Jillian Roberson of the Tulsa police department.

But those robberies won't be so quick anymore, since the staff no longer has immediate access to those highly desirable pills.

"Once the safes are activated by the pharmacists, there's a several minute delay before they have access to the drugs in the safe. So by removing that immediate access, the robber would have to spend more time in the stores," said Schaeffer.

And that could translate into prison time.

"Everybody knows that the longer you spend in the store, the more of a chance there is to get arrested," he said.

Walgreens says they've seen "significant decrease" in pharmacy robberies in other states where the time delay safes have been installed.

"Any time that a large corporation is going to come forward and do something like this, it's going to help, we're hopefully going to see numbers go down," said Roberson.

"It tips the balance of risk versus reward for the would-be robber," said Schaeffer.

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