Police arrest alleged drugstore cowboy, who is also accused of bank robbery

The alleged drugstore cowboy is going to have to hang up his spurs.

Police have arrested a man that they say robbed numerous pharmacies throughout San Francisco and San Mateo County on the lookout for unlimited refills during the month of November and they even say he robbed quite a few banks, too, while he was at it.

Sean Yakota, 35, of San Francisco, was arrested on Nov. 26 while police were conducting undercover surveillance operations at various pharmacy locations throughout The City.

<p> They were looking for an Asian man, 25 to 35 years old who stood about 5-foot-5, police Officer Albie Esparza said in a statement. At one of the pharmacies they were observing, police saw Yakota loitering around the area and attempted to detain him.

Yakota reportedly tried to flee the officers but was ultimately taken into custody.

Police believe Yakota is responsible for 15 robberies throughout San Francisco and San Mateo counties, Esparza said.

During the course of the pharmacy robberies, the suspect would usually approach the pharmacist with a handgun drawn and demand prescription pills, Esparza said. During the bank robberies, he would produce a demand note to the teller. He is also said to have used various disguises during the course of the robberies, in several cases he was reportedly dressed as a clown.

Police received several surveillance images of the suspect that assisted in their investigation.

Yakota was booked into County Jail on several robbery and firearms charges, Esparza said.

Anyone with further information on this ongoing investigation is encouraged to call the lead investigator on the case, Sgt. Tracy Boes, at (415) 553-9143, or the anonymous tipline at (415) 575-4444 or by text at TIP411 with “SFPD” at the beginning of the message.

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