Reporting Andrea Menniti
ANGELS CAMP (CBS13) – A local pharmacist is accused of stealing pills, but not from behind the counter. Police say the pharmacist was stealing pills for months, and was arrested after officers found drugs hidden in his car.
Dean Westphalen, 61, is behind bars and accused of stealing more than $3200 worth of pricey prescription pills from Angels Camp Rite Aid where he worked as a pharmacist.
Store security officers called the police after they noticed something was wrong.
During the investigation, detectives found 35 different drugs: everything from Viagra to controlled pain narcotics like Dilaudid.
“Everybody’s got a skeleton in the closet some place,” said Rite Aid customer Joe Goss.
Westphalen is accused of sneaking pills to his car parked in the store’s parking lot, where officers found several hundred stashed away.
Police are working to see why Westphalen was allegedly pocketing pills, and it’s not clear if he turned around and sold them on the street.
Westphalen was charged with grand theft, burglary and possession of a controlled substance and then booked into the Calaveras County Jail.
“I’m shocked, I don’t use that pharmacy, but it’s not the kind of thing you see here, it happens in big cities not little cities like this,” says Richard King, Angels Camp resident.