Walgreens stabber is on probation for threatening people with a box cutter in River North, prosecutors say

The man charged with repeatedly stabbing another man inside a River North Walgreens with a box cutter this week is on probation for threatening people with a box cutter at a River North bank in November, according to court records.

Roy Pughsley is accused of repeatedly stabbing another man inside Walgreens, 641 North Clark. | CPD; Google

Around 10:30 p.m. Sunday, a 50-year-old homeless man was speaking with an employee inside Walgreens, 641 North Clark, when Roy Pughsley, also homeless, entered the store and crouched down near the shaving products, Assistant State’s Attorney Loukas Kalliantasis said. The Walgreens employee recognized Pughsley because he recently filled out a job application at the store.

The first man, who knows Pughsley, walked over and saw that Pughsley was trying to jimmy the security panel on the display case with a boxcutter-like knife, Kalliantasis continued.

Pughsley yelled at the man and allegedly swung the knife at him, striking the back of the man’s neck and head. He then stabbed the man in the forehead, breaking off the tip of the knife, according to Kalliantasis.

The victim grabbed a snow shovel from a display to defend himself as the employee called 911. Pughsley then stabbed the victim several more times in the legs and left the store, Kalliantasis said.

The employee found the victim lying on the floor covered in blood. The man, who suffered stab wounds to his face, legs, and neck, lost 1½ liters of blood before arriving at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in critical condition.

Kalliantasis said the store’s video cameras recorded Pughsley on the premises, but did not capture footage of the attack.

Pughsley was allegedly carrying a boxcutter-style knife when police arrested him Wednesday in the 500 block of North State Street. He is charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.

Pughsley admitted to stabbing the man with the knife police found him carrying, but claimed that the other man was the aggressor, Kalliantasis said.

His criminal background includes felony convictions for armed habitual criminal in 2012 and two gun cases in 2003. He was convicted of five misdemeanors last year.

Most recently, he received 18 months probation for threatening two people with a boxcutter when they asked him to leave a bank ATM vestibule near State and Huron streets, according to court records. The court file indicates that two judges have ordered Pughsley to receive psychiatric treatment and medications since December.

Judge Kelly McCarthy set Pughsley’s bail in the Walgreens case at $250,000 cash, meaning he must post the full bail amount to get out of jail. He will also be required to go onto electronic monitoring if he posts bond.

McCarthy set a separate bail of $100,000 for violating the terms of probation in the aggravated assault case. That bail requires a 10% deposit.

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CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets. Our editorial email address is news@cwbchicago.com