PHARMACY ROBBER SENTENCED TO NEARLY FIVE YEARS IN PRISON FOR ROBBERY AND ATTEMPTED ROBBERY
Orting Man was Arrested by Pierce County Deputy Kent Mundell Outside Targeted Pharmacy
DREW J. TOSTENSON, 49, of Orting, Washington, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Tacoma to 57 months in prison and three years of supervised release for Pharmacy Robbery and Attempted Pharmacy Robbery. TOSTENSON was arrested April 23, 2009, in the parking lot outside a Puyallup pharmacy. Pierce County Sheriff’s Deputy Kent Mundell spotted TOSTENSON sitting in his car, wearing a disguise similar to one he had worn in a previous robbery. Deputy Mundell made the arrest and disarmed TOSTENSON who was illegally carrying a firearm. Deputy Mundell was killed last month responding to a domestic violence call in rural Pierce County, Washington.
At the sentencing today, U.S. District Judge Ronald B. Leighton told TOSTENSON his robberies have a searing impact on the workers in the pharmacies, saying it is “the kind of crime that can have lifetime consequences” for the victim.
According to the records filed in the case, TOSTENSON pleaded guilty to using a fake bomb to rob Kirk’s Pharmacy in Puyallup on April 3, 2009. TOSTENSON entered the pharmacy wearing a disguise and placed a sack on the counter that appeared to hold sticks of dynamite and a detonator. TOSTENSON demanded all the oxycodone in the pharmacy and threatened to blow up the bomb by remote control if the pharmacist called police. TOSTENSON fled with about $3,000 worth of pills. The pharmacy was cleared and the bomb squad responded and determined that the sack contained a hoax bomb device. On April 20, 2009, TOSTENSON attempted to use a similar hoax bomb to rob The Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy in Puyallup, Washington. The pharmacist told TOSTENSON he did not have any oxycodone in stock and TOSTENSON left the pharmacy with the hoax bomb. Just three days later, on April 23, 2009, TOSTENSON was spotted by Deputy Mundell outside Kirk’s Pharmacy and arrested. TOSTENSON was armed with a Colt 1911 .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol, with the manufacturer's serial number obliterated.
In asking for a significant prison sentence for TOSTENSON, Assistant United States Attorney Mike Dion noted the damage that TOSTENSON’s robberies had on the pharmacy workers. His scheme “was to terrify the pharmacy employees by threatening to blow them up with dynamite if they did not comply with his demands. The dynamite was fake. The trauma to his victims was real – as was the loaded .45 pistol that Tostenson had on him when he was arrested as he was about to commit another robbery,” Mr. Dion wrote in his sentencing memo.
The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mike Dion.
For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office, at (206) 553-4110 or Emily.Langlie@USDOJ.Gov.