October 25, 2012

Alleged Augusta Rite Aid robber arraigned, bail set at $50,000

19-year-old Dylan Karczewski allegedly tried to hold up North Belfast Avenue pharmacy, then threatened to blow up store

By Craig Crosby ccrosby@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

AUGUSTA -- An Augusta man accused of robbing a city pharmacy and then barricading himself inside the store's bathroom made his first court appearance Wednesday.

click image to enlarge

Dylan Karczewski

Contributed photo

A judge in Waterville District Court ordered 19-year-old Dylan Karczewski held in lieu of $50,000 cash bail. Karczewski, who appeared via video, is charged with robbery, stealing drugs and terrorizing.

He remained behind bars at the Kennebec County jail.

Karczewski is charged with robbing the Rite Aid at 2007 North Belfast Ave. Tuesday night, threatening to hurt a pharmacist while demanding oxycodone and syringes.

Police said Karczewski then fled to the store's bathroom and locked himself inside. He told responding police that he had chemicals and would "burn this place down," according to an affidavit filed Kennebec County Superior Court by Augusta Police Officer Nathan Walker.

A standoff lasting more than 30 minutes ensued as police viewed store surveillance video to confirm that Karczewski was armed with neither weapons nor an explosive chemical.

He then reportedly used the needles to inject himself with the drugs while inside the bathroom.

He was taken to the hospital after police broke into the bathroom and arrested Karczewski without incident.

Karczewski graduated in June 2011 from Cony High School, where he was a starter on the hockey team, according to Kennebec Journal archives.

Karczewski, who has an infant daughter, was arrested on a warrant on May 31, 2011, and charged on a warrant.

A report says police were responding to a report of terrorizing at a Riverside Drive store.

Tuesday's pharmacy robbery, which occurred around 5 p.m., led to the evacuation of the store's customers and employees.

Karczewski was in the men's bathroom, near the back of the store, when police arrived, according to Walker's affidavit. Officers attempted to open the door with a key, and Karczewski yelled his threat to destroy the building.

Augusta Police Sgt. Richard Dubois continued to talk to Karczewski and convinced him to slide his driver's license under the door.

Walker and Augusta Police Lt. Christopher Massey studied the store video searching for signs of a weapon or chemicals hidden underneath the large black hooded sweatshirt and black shorts Karczewski wore.

Inside the bathroom, police found half-empty bottles of oxycodone. Walker said officers found some of the pills on Karczewski later at the hospital. He told police that other pills fell into the sink inside the bathroom.

"I could tell that Dylan (Karczewski) had been injecting himself with oxycodone by the used needles found in the bathroom," Walker wrote.

Karczewski, who declined to speak to police without a lawyer, was held without bail overnight at Kennebec County jail.

Craig Crosby -- 621-5642


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