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Clearwater man accused of stealing elderly woman's drugs

LARGO — A Clearwater man is accused of stealing prescription pills from his friend's elderly mother.

Walter D. McKenzie, 44, of 1955 Meadow Drive was arrested Monday and charged with prescription fraud and violation of his probation on an improper exhibition of a firearm conviction.

According to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, McKenzie stole a bottle of the anti-anxiety drug lorazepam from the 79-year-old woman when he helped her move to Dunnellon on Nov. 3.

The prescription bottle still contained 10 pills and had one refill remaining, the Sheriff's Office said. Later that day, deputies say, McKenzie took the bottle to a CVS Pharmacy at 4000 East Bay Drive in Largo and had the prescription refilled.

The woman noticed the bottle was missing Friday and called a CVS in Dunnellon to try to get a refill. Pharmacy staff told the woman, who is legally blind, that it had already been refilled in Largo and was picked up by McKenzie.

The woman then complained to the Sheriff's Office.

On Monday, detectives interviewed McKenzie, who admitted he stole and refilled the prescription, according to the Sheriff's Office.

The violation of probation charged stemmed from a May conviction on improper exhibition of a firearm in which McKenzie pleaded no contest and was sentenced to a year's probation. On Tuesday, McKenzie was being held without bail in the Pinellas County Jail.

Rita Farlow can be reached at farlow@sptimes.com or (727) 445-4157.

Clearwater man accused of stealing elderly woman's drugs 11/09/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 9, 2010 7:23pm]
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