From the Archives: Drugstore Cowboys (1977)

in Culture

By George Butler

There are a lot of thieves in the South. I’ve seen police crime bulletins that list North Carolina, Georgia and South Carolina as the top three states in crime rate. They’re also the hottest states for drugstore robberies, although Louisiana, Florida, Alabama and Tennessee are also good pickins. In fact, according to a new state law, South Carolina pharmacies can no longer get insurance unless they are properly alarmed. Pharmacies are being hit all over the country, but the South is definitely the center of the action—maybe because Southerners tend to know more about pharmaceuticals. And towns tend to be smaller down here, with less sophisticated alarm systems and fewer police.

I’m 20 now, and I’ve been hitting stores for five years. But my first job was a doctor’s office. A friend had told me how to get in and out of the place. He had described it as a “truckload,” literally “a million dollars’ worth.” Well, a few days later, me and my main boy, J.C., were tripping on some acid and really freaking out. We couldn’t find a barb anywhere to come down with. It just so happened that at that moment we were driving by this office. I told J.C. we could get some downs there, and he was ready.

We parked his truck a mile away in the woods and took along two burlap sacks, some masking tape, socks for gloves and a sawed-off shotgun. I had to cut through five locked doors with my trusty Buck pocket knife. We ended up with four gallons of paregoric, 40 grams of sodium pentathol and a bunch of bullshit. Since this was our first heist, we really didn’t know what to look for. We just took as …

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Author: High Times / High Times

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