Hialeah police bet the people who burglarized a Walgreens for prescription drugs Thursday were children of habit. They say they cashed in that bet Saturday when police staking out another Hialeah Walgreens busted a gang of four composed of two sets of brothers.
All four — 19-year-old twins Jonluis and Joanky Labadie, 18-year-old Raul Ponce and 16-year-old Albert Ponce — face theft charges for the Saturday burglary of the Walgreens at 780 E. Ninth St. So far, only Raul Ponce has been charged with Thursday’s robbery at 7605 W. 33rd Ave. Each sits in jail with massive bonds of $2 million on just on four counts of oxycodone and hydrocodone trafficking. Albert Ponce will be charged as an adult.
Police say after Thursday’s theft, surveillance video showed them the suspects drove a white or silver Mercedes-Benz and weren’t interested in batteries, adult diapers, hair products or anything in Walgreens outside the pharmacy. So, they watched several Walgreens the next two days.
That gave an unexpected and unwanted audience, police said, to two young men using a crowbar to force open the metal security door of the East Ninth Street Walgreens. Soon after, a silver Mercedes made an appearance. As marked police cars descended on the parking lot, the Mercedes accelerated down Ninth Street. At the corner of West Fourth Avenue and Ninth Street, the car stopped and all four suspects scampered away.
As they tounded up the suspects, police say they found two gym bags in the car — one with drugs from the Walgreens at 780 E. Ninth Street and one with drugs from the Walgreens at 8650 SW 132nd St. From the Hialeah Walgreens, they say there were 558 grams of oxycodone, 563 grams of hydrocodone, seven grams of morphine and three bottles of promethazine with codeine. The bag with the South Miami-Dade Walgreens drugs contained 595 grams of oxycodone, 467 grmas of hydrocodone and three bottles of promethazine with codeine.