Defendant Allegedly Ordered a “Hit” on the Person He Believed Had Cooperated with Law Enforcement and Led to his Arrest
Baltimore, Maryland – On February 14, 2019, David Robinson, age 50, of Baltimore, Maryland, was arrested on a criminal complaint charging him with murder for hire, retaliating against a witness, and commission of a crime while on release. Robinson, a licensed pharmacist who owned and operated the Frankford Family Pharmacy, pleaded guilty on October 10, 2018, to a federal drug conspiracy involving the distribution of oxycodone and alprazolam outside the scope of professional practice and not for a legitimate medical purpose. Robinson was scheduled for sentencing on those charges today.
The new charges were announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur; Assistant Special Agent in Charge Don A. Hibbert of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Baltimore District Office; and Acting Commissioner Michael Harrison of the Baltimore Police Department.
“We have zero tolerance for any effort to intimidate or retaliate against witnesses,” said U.S. Attorney Robert K. Hur.
“This investigation and subsequent arrest is a perfect example of how pharmaceutical cases that involve doctors or pharmacists have the potential to be just as violent as a street gang case,” said Supervisory Special Agent Todd C. Edwards, spokesman for Drug Enforcement Administration Baltimore District Office.
According to the affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint, on October 27, 2018, the Citi-Watch camera system captured a drug transaction, which led to the arrest of an individual, CS-2. A search of CS-2’s vehicle resulted in the recovery of two shoeboxes containing a total of 35 stock pharmacy bottles of the prescription medications Promethazine and Clonidine.
CS-2 agreed to cooperate with law enforcement and advised that David Robinson had provided the drugs found in the car. CS-2 stated that Robinson had provided drugs to CS-2 for the past three years, using prescriptions that Robinson knew were fraudulent. CS-2 reported that after the search warrant was executed at the pharmacy on June 27, 2017, Robinson began providing CS-2 with case lots of boxes of medications in exchange for cash and that no prescription was required. Further, CS-2 reported that six months after the raid, Robinson was still ordering pills from his vendors.
According to the affidavit, after his arrest in 2017, Robinson mentioned the name of a person (“CS-1”) that Robinson believed had cooperated with law enforcement and led to his arrest in the drug conspiracy case, and told CS-2 that, “Jokers got to go.” CS-2 told law enforcement that Robinson requested CS-2 to assist in the murder of CS-1 and gave CS-2 information about CS-1. CS-2 told investigators that he/she did not know of anybody that could kill CS-1, but saw a chance to make some money from Robinson. CS-2 told law enforcement that he/she told Robinson that he/she knew someone who could do the “hit,” and that the fee would be $10,000, with $5,000 as a down payment and $5,000 when CS-1 was killed. According to the affidavit, in approximately late 2017, Robinson provided CS-2 with $5,000, which CS-2 deposited in the bank and used to pay bills. According to CS-2, Robinson regularly questioned CS-2 about the progress, but CS-2 would make excuses and tell Robinson that CS-1 was hard to locate.
The criminal complaint alleges that from December 13, 2018 through February 7, 2019, CS-2 made three controlled purchases of drugs from Robinson, at the direction of law enforcement, using cash provided by DEA agents. CS-2 purchased a total of 118 stock pharmacy bottles of Clonidine, each containing 100 tablets; and 24 stock pharmacy bottles of 50 mg Promethazine tablets, with each bottle containing 100 tablets. Robinson allegedly did not request, nor did CS-2 provide, a prescription for any of the drugs.
During a controlled purchase on January 24, 2019, CS-2 and Robinson allegedly discussed the murder of CS-1. CS-2 told Robinson he/she had found someone to commit the murder, but that person wanted additional money to commit the crime. According to the affidavit, Robinson agreed to pay the person the amount owed. On February 14, 2019, CS-2 called Robinson and told him that the murder was done and the guy would want his money. The complaint alleges that Robinson requested proof that the murder had been committed, and CS-2 showed Robinson several photos that appeared to show CS-1 dead. Robinson allegedly indicated that was the right person and provided CS-2 with additional cash. After the meeting, law enforcement arrested Robinson and CS-2.
A criminal complaint is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by criminal complaint is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally based strategies to reduce violent crime.
United States Attorney Robert K. Hur commended the DEA and the Baltimore Police Department for their work in the investigation. Mr. Hur thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kenneth S. Clark and Samika N. Boyd, who are prosecuting the case.
SOURCE: news provided by JUSTICE.GOV on February 15, 2019.