Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

March 11, 2014

Pharmacy robbery nets 11 years

By Michael R. Moser
Editor

CROSSVILLE — The man who conducted a mid-morning robbery of a Crossville pharmacy pleaded guilty in Cumberland County Criminal Court last week and will serve all of his 11-year sentence behind bars.

Thomas Samuel Copeland, 57, pleaded guilty to aggravated robbery for robbing The Medicine Shop in Woodmere Mall Sept. 23, 20113. Charges of possession of a weapon during commission of a dangerous felony, and felony evading arrest, were dropped in exchange for his plea.

Copeland has been in jail since his arrest shortly after the holdup and will be given credit for time served, but because of his record and the serious nature of the charge, he will be required to serve every day of the 11-year sentence.

Crossville Police arrested Copeland after he led them on a highspeed chase from Woodmere Mall to Penfield St., up Livingston Rd. onto Miller Ave. The pursuit ended on Milo Lemert Parkway.

Copeland reportedly entered the pharmacy around 10:40 a.m. and produced a gun, demanding oxycodone from the staff. He fled with nearly $1,300 worth of the controlled drug. Fourteen bottles of the painkiller were recovered from his vehicle by city police when he was taken into custody.

In other cases on the docket, the following pleas were entered:

•Timothy Leo Baker, 48, Louise St., charged with statutory rape by an authority figure, pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of statutory rape and received a two-year suspended sentence under judicial diversion. While on supervised probation, he must register on the state sex offender registry and must pay court costs. If diversion is completed successfully, he will be eligible to petition the court to have the charge removed from his record.

•Joseph Charles Parrent III, 26, charged with aggravated statutory rape, pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of statutory rape and received a two-year suspended sentence under judicial diversion. While on probation, Parrent must register on the state sex offender registry. If diversion is completed successfully, he will be eligible to petition the court to have the charge removed from his record. Parrent also presented an information and pleaded to theft of merchandise of less than $500 and received an 11-month and 29-day suspended sentence to be served on supervised probation under judicial diversion.