Police: Suspect admitted to Pittsfield liquor store heist


PITTSFIELD — Sean Matthews woke up Tuesday morning and decided to rob a liquor store to support his heroin habit, he told police.

Matthews, 25, told police he was responsible for the armed robbery of K&K Discount Liquors and Variety on North Street, according to court documents.

Police were dispatched to the store about 10:13 a.m. after Matthews allegedly entered wearing a hooded sweatshirt, ball cap and sunglasses, and brandished a knife.

Matthews demanded money from the register, threatened the clerk on duty and told her "not to say a ... word," the documents state.

Police did not disclose the amount of cash taken, but store owner Jerry Ely, estimated Matthews' take at between $400 and $500.

The clerk recognized Matthews and noted he is a regular customer of the store.

Police found Matthews at his home address on nearby Cromwell Avenue.

He was placed under arrest without incident, police said and showed officers where he'd hidden the money. He also took them to a wooded area where he got rid of the sweatshirt he was wearing during the robbery.

Following his booking, Matthews allegedly told police he was out of money to purchase heroin, so he decided to arm himself with a kitchen knife from his home and rob the store.

He pleaded not guilty in Central Berkshire District Court on Wednesday to charges of armed robbery and intimidation of a witness.

Judge William Rota ordered him held without bail until a pretrial hearing on July 27, when the issue of bail will be revisited, under an agreement between Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Veronica LeClair and Matthews' attorney, Thomas Donohue.

Donohue said Matthews has agreed to participate in substance abuse counseling while in custody.

Contact Bob Dunn at 413-496-6249.


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