The Washington Post

Suspected robber threatened victims with blood-filled syringe, Taser gun

A Columbia man allegedly robbed a CVS pharmacist by threatening her with a syringe he said contained AIDS-tainted blood, according to Howard County Police. The man was charged Wednesday.

Blessing was charged Wednesday for two separate incidents. (Photo courtesy of Howard County Police)

According to a release from Howard County Police, some of the blood came out of the syringe, but missed the pharmacist.

The suspect, 52-year-old Benjamin Frederick Blessing, fled with over $27,000 in prescription medication on April 18, the release said.

Police said the liquid in the syringe was blood, but they have yet to determine whether it contains the AIDS virus.

Blessing has also been charged in an incident where he allegedly demanded money from a woman at an ATM while holding a Taser gun.

Around 1 p.m. on October 10, the female victim and her 4-year-old child were alone at an ATM in Ellicott City, according to authorities. The victim told police a man approached her with what looked like a Taser gun in his hand. Though he demanded money, none was stolen.

Howard County Police charged Blessing with armed robbery, first and second degree assault, reckless endangerment and theft, the release said.


Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read


Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
Don’t be ‘that’ sports parent | On Parenting
Miss Manners: The technology's changed, but the rules are the same
A flood of refugees from Syria but only a trickle to America
Play Videos
John Lewis, 'Marv the Barb' and the politics of barber shops
Kids share best advice from mom
Using Fitbit to help kids lose weight
Play Videos
This man's job is binge-watching for Netflix
Transgender swimmer now on Harvard men's team
Portland's most important meal of the day
Play Videos
5 ways to raise girls to be leaders
How much can one woman eat?
The signature drink of New Orleans