Anonymous tipster leads police to armed robbery suspects - WCIV-TV | ABC News 4 - Charleston News, Sports, Weather

Anonymous tipster leads police to armed robbery suspects

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Tompkins (provided) A mug shot for Mendones has been requested. Tompkins (provided) A mug shot for Mendones has been requested.

MT. PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) -- The investigation into the robbery of the East Cooper Pharmacy had gone cold, until a hot tip came in to Mt. Pleasant police from a concerned citizen.

According to police reports, the March 25 robbery was "administratively closed" on April 30 after all leads had been exhausted.

About a week later, investigators were told that someone had come in to the police department with information on the case.

Police said the tipster named Arturo Mendones as the man in the camouflage jacket that held up the pharmacy and his girlfriend, Sonja Tompkins drove the getaway car.

When asked why they were coming forward, the informant said they were worried about the well being of the 5-year-old child that lived with the couple, saying that the young boy was around drugs so much he knew how to simulate injecting himself with "medicine" like he "saw his mom do."

The informant also said the child almost picked up a pill and ate it.

Because the details the tipster gave coincided with details police already had in the case, they were able to get a search and arrest warrant for both suspects.

According to the report, police caught up with Arturo Mendones who was wearing the same shoes the robber was described  as wearing by witnesses - grey Nikes with red soles. Police said they asked him about the camo jacket the robber was seen wearing and he said he didn't own one. That's when police showed him a Facebook photo of him wearing said jacket. He admitted he used to have one, but didn't have it anymore.

After interviewing the suspect, police charged Arturo "Art" Padilla Mendones with armed robbery. He was given a $100,000 bond.

Attention then turned to Sonja Tompkins who told police she didn't know anything about the robbery.

Police, however, heard from multiple sources that she had been bragging about how much money they had made from the crime and that they had so many pills, it was "difficult to count them all."

One of the sources told police Tompkins had even given her details on the crime including the lack of security in the pharmacy and how Mendones had to dress to cover up all of his tattoos.

"We finally did something right," she reportedly said. "We ripped them off."

According to the report, a search of Tompkins' home turned up blue latex gloves (which the robber was reportedly wearing), drug paraphernalia, empty and unlabeled prescription bottles, an East Cooper Pharmacy prescription bottle made out to the pharmacist who was robbed back in March, unknown pills in bottles labeled as Cymbalta and a bag of white powder.

Sonja Robin Tompkins was charged with three counts of possession and given $15,000 bond.

The Department of Social Services was notified of the case.

Further reports state that the child had tested positive for "high levels of multiple drugs."

More charges of armed robbery and unlawful neglect of a child were added on Tuesday. Tompkins turned herself in and bond was set at $50,000.

 

 

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