Saturday, February 17, 2018
Public safety

New Port Richey police arrest man in string of robberies

NEW PORT RICHEY — Aaron McGuire told police he went on his weeklong crime rampage to pay back a drug dealer.

The 39-year-old, who lives at 7208 Adair St., was arrested Friday on charges of attempted armed robbery, bank robbery and robbery with a firearm. Police found drugs and paraphernalia on him as well, according to the New Port Richey Police Department.

On May 21, McGuire went to the House of Tans at 6628 Ridge Road, police reports state. He said he wanted to sign up for regular tanning sessions, and a woman gave him a 20-minute tour of the place. After that, she asked him for a credit card. According to police, McGuire put his wallet on the counter and told her he was robbing her, asking for money and keys. He then told the woman to go to the back of the store, and he put a gun to her chest .

"You better give me at least one minute to leave or I'm going to kill you," he said, according to the report.

Six days later, McGuire tried to rob a woman at a Wells Fargo ATM at 6604 Massachusetts Ave., reports state. He told her not to move and to hand over her ATM card and whatever else she had on her. He lifted up his shirt to show her a handgun — later found out to be fake — tucked into the front of his shorts. The woman refused and got into her car. McGuire pounded on her window, the report said. She decided to chase him when he got into his car but couldn't keep up with his speeding. He got away.

The next day, police say, McGuire robbed a BB&T Bank, also on Massachusetts Avenue. He walked up to the teller and told her that it was a robbery and she needed to give him money. She gave him $900, and he ran away. He was later identified in a photo pack, police say.

Officers arrested McGuire two days later when someone who knew him saw his picture on a website.

Officers scoped out his residence and saw him get into a car. They boxed him in before he could pull out, and they took him into custody. During a patdown, he told officers about two fake guns he owned. He also said he had a crack pipe on him in his right front pocket. In the left pocket, he had crack cocaine in a little container.

He told officers he did the robberies because he owed a drug dealer named "Slim" some money.

McGuire remained in the Land O' Lakes jail Friday with bail set at more than $600,000.

Contact Jon Silman at (727) 869-6229, j[email protected] or @jonsilman1 on Twitter.

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