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Woburn Man Indicted on Charges In Connection to Six Incidents in Woburn and Burlington

Matthew Pappas, 18, of Woburn, pleaded guilty to charges related to a Sept. 2010 string of armed robberies.

A Woburn man pleaded guilty to robbery charges in within a span of two days in Woburn and Burlington, Middlesex District Attorney Gerry Leone informed the public today.

According to a release from the District Attorney, Matthew Pappas, 18, of Woburn, pleaded guilty to charges of armed robbery (3 counts), armed assault with the intent to rob (2 counts), masked armed robbery, and assault with a dangerous weapon (6 counts).

Judge Elizabeth Fahey sentenced the defendant to ten years probation with the conditions that he is ordered to remain drug free, undergo a substance abuse evaluation and mental health evaluation as well as follow up treatment, the release states. Pappas was also ordered not to have contact with any of the victims in the case, maintain full-time work or school, and to remain on house arrest with GPS monitoring for the first year of probation with windows of release to accommodate school, work, and/or church.  

"This defendant has admitted and taken responsibility for engaging in a 28-hour crime spree, displaying a firearm and demanding the valuables of six separate innocent victims, placing them in tremendous fear,” District Attorney Leone said. “The defendant’s actions were extremely disturbing and alarming to law enforcement and the public.  By pleading guilty today, the defendant is admitting his responsibility for his brazen crimes.”   

According to authorities, at approximately 9:30 p.m. on Sept. 20, 2010, the first victim was shopping at the in Burlington. When the victim exited the store, she walked towards her car and was approached by the defendant and a second individual. The defendant demanded that the victim give him her purse and lifted his shirt to expose a black hand-gun tucked into the waistband of his shorts. Fearing for her life, the victim handed her purse to the defendant before he and the other individual fled the scene.

On Sept. 21, 2010, at approximately 3:20 p.m., a second victim was waiting at a bus stop on Montvale Avenue in Woburn when the defendant walked by the victim, pulled a black handgun out from his shorts and demanded that the victim give him her purse, officials said in the release. Afraid, the victim handed her purse to the defendant and he fled the area.

That same night, at approximately 10 p.m., a third victim was carrying groceries to her car in the parking lot of the Shaw’s Market in Burlington when she was approached by the defendant who exposed a gun inside his sweatshirt before demanding her purse. The victim handed the defendant her purse and he left the area on foot.

The District Attorney reports that again on that same night, the defendant approached a fourth victim on Federal Street in Woburn, pointed a handgun at the victim’s stomach, and demanded her purse. According to authorities, the victim was able to enter her vehicle and the defendant fled after she put her car in gear.

Shortly after the incident on Federal Street, the defendant attempted to rob a fifth victim a short distance away on North Warren Street, authorities reported. The defendant had a mask over his face and approached the victim who was in her vehicle. The defendant pointed a handgun at the victim and demanded her purse. The defendant fled the area when the victim began honking her vehicle’s horn. 

A sixth incident took place at approximately 1 a.m., on Sept. 22, 2010, outside a convenience store on Main Street in Woburn, a short distance from North Warren Street. Authorities determined that the defendant was wearing a mask and tugged on the victim’s purse as she was walking through the parking lot. The victim saw a handgun in the defendant’s hand before he left the parking lot with the victim’s purse.  

Woburn police were already in the area of Main Street when the sixth incident was reported, the District Attorney's release states. A Woburn police officer located the defendant hiding in bushes on Franklin Street. Upon seeing the officer, the defendant ran and a foot pursuit ensued. The defendant was located hiding under a pickup truck in a parking lot on Winn Street. He was arrested and brought to the Woburn Police Department for booking.

The defendant was arraigned on Sept. 24, 2010 in Woburn District Court where he was held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing. On Sept. 29 he was deemed dangerous and again held without bail. Following an appeal by defense counsel to a Superior Court Judge, the defendant was released on house arrest with a GPS bracelet. He was indicted by a Middlesex grand jury on Nov. 23, 2010 and arraigned on Dec. 9, 2010 where Middlesex Superior Court Clerk Magistrate Michael Sullivan ordered the defendant held on $5,000 cash bail with conditions.

Paul A. Medeiros September 10, 2011 at 04:03 AM
Lets see a black hand gun (unused) but a black hand gun. Now free and the court has sentenced the defendant to ten years probation with the conditions that he is ordered to remain drug free, undergo a substance abuse evaluation and mental health evaluation as well as follow up treatment, the release states. Pappas was also ordered not to have contact with any of the victims in the case, maintain full-time work or school, and to remain on house arrest with GPS monitoring for the first year of probation with windows of release to accommodate school, work, and/or church. What is wrong with the system?
Neighbor September 10, 2011 at 11:26 AM
I agree with you Paul, this kid stole a neighbor's bike while in middle school. I guess he is just better than jail or prison. Another neighbor watched him as he sat in his car one day at a Four Courner's ATM, getting frustrated that the person he was about to rob was taking too long, he finally took off. The neighbor, suspicious, went to another ATM. Yup, you guessed it, we all live in his neighborhood, and are really comfortable with this guy being around?!?. Hey, he even got to have all of his senior classwork brought to his house last year so he could graduate with his class! Exactly how many crimes does one have to commit to get jail time. What is wrong with the system is right.
Gina Leto September 10, 2011 at 12:07 PM
Seriously? If he doesn't get jail time where will this guy be in 10 years? Will he shoot some poor person in a parking lot, or perhaps a police officer doing his duty? This is where it starts. When are people going to wake up!
Athena September 10, 2011 at 12:21 PM
Another criminal set free by the 'justice' system. Seems the only people getting 'justice' are the thieves and murderers. Anyone remember the man that shot Officer Maguire?? Lets hope we are not saying the same exact thing about this guy in a few years. When is the system going to be updated............. tsk tsk tsk.. Stay safe everyone.
Dianne Autenzio September 10, 2011 at 01:30 PM
This is unbelievalbe especially with everything that has been happening in Woburn. I am sure we will be reading about him again soon. Where is justice. . .What about the victims. Wake up officials
Christine Souza September 10, 2011 at 08:19 PM
A good example of the justice system can be found in the Casey Anthony case. Only difference is she got away with murder. This guy should be doing time. Chris Souza
Athena September 11, 2011 at 12:25 PM
CHristine I agree with you. The Casey Anthony case is a great example of the fact that even though we have all these parameters in place to punish criminals, defense attorneys do ANYTHING and EVERYTHING to spin things in their favor. This kid is 18 years old. Now is the time to intervene and turn him around. He is threatening people and showing weapons and walking the streets now??? In my opinion he is only a few steps away from taking the next step.. Using the weapon...
Jay September 11, 2011 at 03:49 PM
are you kidding? this kid gets probation for ARMED ROBBERY (6 OF THEM) yet if it had been some poor slob charged with OUI he would have gone to jail. really?
Julie Smith September 12, 2011 at 06:33 PM
Not that I'm downplaying what he did. I feel terrible for the victims but not sure why ppl r surprised he got off. First of all get your facts straight, the gun was FAKE. I had a real gun pulled on me and my friend in Woburn right outside the post office. The man was drunk and trying to drive away when the cops arrived. Then the charges mysteriously went away cause he was related to a former Woburn cop. The system is bs! That guy could have injured me, my friend and numerous innocent Woburn cops. What's fair is fair. Glad he gets a chance to turn his life around.
kitty24 November 09, 2012 at 03:51 AM
Julue you are an idiot. The gun was a bebe gun and could have done damage if shot up close. Victims didnt know the gun was real so technically it could be considered real. I am a victim of papas. I lost evwrything i owned that day and suffer from ptsd now. All because of a loser who thinks its ok to rob people. And you.are a dumb ass bitch for saying glad he gets to get straight while i suffer from nightmares and panick attacks. Dumb bitch
kitty24 November 09, 2012 at 03:51 AM
Julie**

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