MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - They say, "If at first you don't succeed, try try again..." and that's exactly what 21-year-old Matthew Ison did Sunday after allegedly attempting to rob the Walgreens drug store at 3892 Atlanta Hwy.
Investigators are releasing new details on Ison's actions that day, a day he's accused of spending trying to rob two drug stores not far from each other.
The pharmacist on duty at the first store told authorities the suspect originally came to the counter, mask on, and asked about a bottle of Tylenol. When the suspect complained the Tylenol was too expensive, he walked off.
Returning a few minutes later without the mask was Ison. Authorities say he slipped the pharmacist a note demanding Oxycontin, Xanax and Lortab. The note added "nobody would get harmed" if the drugs were handed over.
When the pharmacist asked if the situation was a joke, the suspect quickly got cold feet saying "never mind, never mind" as he scurried out the door.
Units were en route to the first store when dispatchers notified them that witnesses were reporting customers fleeing from a second Walgreens at 6608 Atlanta Highway.
This time witnesses and workers inside the store said the man, who had once again been turned away by workers, returned with a large kitchen knife in-hand. Ison walked into the store, put the mask on his face and demanded the same drugs from the pharmacists.
When officers arrived on the scene Ison ran from the store and crossed Atlanta Highway. At some point he swallowed an undetermined amount of pills, and police had to take him to Jackson Hospital. He was listed in critical but stable condition.
Tuesday Ison was released from the hospital into police custody. He was booked on two robbery warrants and a theft of property warrant.
Police say a records search indicated Ison had committed two other robberies in February. He'd been sentenced to two years probation and two years suspended sentence the previous October.
"This is yet another case of a repeat offender victimizing our community, who should have been incarcerated," said Chief Art Baylor. "Hopefully, the Criminal Justice System will give Mr. Ison the punishment he needs this time and take him off our streets before he seriously injures or kills someone."
Ison is being held on $135,000 bond.