Car­bon­ear man pleads guilty to armed rob­bery

Michael Brian Bow­man will be sen­tenced April 12 on four charges

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE - BY TERRY ROBERTS

A Car­bon­ear man has en­tered guilty pleas on four charges in con­nec­tion with a brazen day­light armed rob­bery at a phar­macy in South River on Aug. 20, 2012.

Michael Brian Bow­man will be sen­tenced on April 12.

Bow­man, who turned 26 on Sept. 19, has been in cus­tody since the in­ci­dent, which oc­curred at Bac­calieu Trail Phar­macy at mid-morn­ing.

Dur­ing an ap­pear­ance at pro­vin­cial court in Har­bour Grace on Feb. 25, Bow­man pleaded guilty to the fol­low­ing charges: • use of a firearm in com­mit­ting a rob­bery; • be­ing dis­guised with in­tent; • point­ing a firearm;

• and pos­sess­ing a weapon or im­i­ta­tion for a dan­ger­ous pur­pose.

Two other charges were con­di­tion­ally with­drawn. They are: us­ing a firearm in the com­mis­sion or at­tempted com­mis­sion of an in­dictable of­fence, and care­lessly us­ing a firearm or am­mu­ni­tion. A pre-sen­tence report will also be com­pleted. Bow­man had waived his right to a bail hear­ing, and has now served roughly five months in cus­tody.

Bow­man, his hands cuffed, seemed in good spir­its dur­ing his ap­pear­ance, smil­ing and chat­ting with court of­fi­cials. Af­ter­wards, while smok­ing a cig­a­rette out­side the court, he was ob­served chat­ting pleas­antly with what ap­peared to be fam­ily and friends.

Bow­man has been re­manded into cus­tody un­til his sen­tenc­ing, which is sched­uled for 9:30 a.m.

Ter­ri­fy­ing in­ci­dent

Ac­cord­ing to the RCMP, a masked man car­ry­ing a ri­fle en­tered Bac­calieu Trail Phar­macy on Aug. 20, marched to the rear of the build­ing, pointed a ri­fle at the phar­ma­cist and de­manded a spe­cific pre­scrip­tion drug.

Ac­cord­ing to owner Linda Sesk, the phar­ma­cist com­plied and threw the drugs on the floor near the sus­pect.

“He pointed the gun di­rectly at the phar­ma­cist,” Sesk later told The Com­pass. “It was all over very quickly.”

There were five em­ploy­ees in the store at the time, though it’s not be­lieved any cus­tomers wit­nessed the in­ci­dent.

Bow­man fled the scene in a car — a white Mit­subishi Lancer — and was later ob­served trav­el­ling to­wards Bay Roberts on Veter­ans Me­mo­rial High­way.

Of­fi­cers with the Trin­ity Con­cep­tion District RCMP later stopped the car at the ac­cess road to Har­bour Grace, where an ar­rest was made with­out in­ci­dent. A loaded .22 cal­i­bre ri­fle was found in the ve­hi­cle. Sesk later de­scribed Bow­man as a “very des­per­ate young per­son who couldn’t get a pre­scrip­tion filled, and needed it right away.”

Sesk said her em­ploy­ees were “ter­ri­fied” by the in­ci­dent.

Po­lice de­scribed the in­ci­dent as a “des­per­ate, dan­ger­ous and vi­o­lent act,” and sug­gested Bow­man had an “ad­dic­tion is­sue.”

Bow­man had no crim­i­nal record prior to the in­ci­dent.

Photo by Terry Roberts/The Com­pass Michael Brian Bow­man of Car­bon­ear is seen out­side pro­vin­cial court in Har­bour Grace on Feb. 25.

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