A hatchet-wielding man terrorized employees at an El Cerrito Walgreens on Monday morning before ingesting a “sizable” amount of product from the store’s pharmacy, police said.
The incident unfolded at 7:15 a.m. at the Walgreens at 11565 San Pablo Ave., when officers responded to a report that a man armed with a small axe, also known as a hatchet, was trying to get into the store.
When officers arrived, they learned the suspect — identified as Edward Barron, 29 — had brandished the weapon at employees and warned them not to call the police. The employees fled and Barron used his hatchet to break into the pharmacy office, which was not yet open for business.
Along with smashing the glass pharmacy door, he blocked off the entrance to the pharmacy with a large computer server tower.
“Officers tried to convince the suspect to surrender, to no avail,” police said, and learned Barron “was actively ingesting a sizable quantity of pharmaceutical drugs while inside.”
Police eventually forced their way through before discovering the suspect locked himself in a restroom. After again refusing to surrender, officers got in, confronted him and a struggle ensued. The suspect hit an officer and a police dog but was detained.
“Officers discovered that the suspect was bleeding from injuries he sustained when he shattered the glass door to the pharmacy,” police said in a statement. “He was also suffering from ingesting an unknown quantity of pharmaceutical drugs. Officers called for an ambulance and escorted him to an area hospital for treatment. No police department personnel were injured during the arrest.”
The El Cerrito Police Department is seeking further information about Barron and has asked anyone who knows him to contact (510) 215-4400. Police are aiming to pursue multiple charges in connection with the incident.
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