WOBURN, Massachusetts — A man who acted as the lookout during a jewelry heist at a Woburn department store that resulted in the shooting death of a veteran police officer pleaded guilty Wednesday to second-degree murder.
Scott Hanright, 23, of Wakefield, was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole in 25 years. He was sentenced in Middlesex Superior Court after pleading guilty to all 22 charges he faced in connection with the Dec. 26, 2010 robbery at a Kohls's store that ended with the death of Officer Jack Maguire.
Maguire was 60 and about six months away from retirement.
His wife, Desiree, said in a statement read in court that she will never get over the death.
"I often think about all the things that we will not experience as a couple, like enjoying our retirement years, seeing our children marry, becoming grandparents, and much more," she wrote in a statement read by Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan,
Hanright, who was 19 at the time of the heist, had faced a first-degree murder charge even though he was unarmed during the robbery. A first-degree murder conviction carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole. His trial had been scheduled to start next week.
"Resolution of this case will minimize the pain for Jack's family," Woburn police Chief Robert Ferullo Jr. said outside court, almost breaking down.
Hanright acted as a lookout during the robbery that happened in the middle of a snowstorm the day after Christmas. Another man involved in the robbery, Dominic Cinelli, 57, a career criminal who had been granted parole in 2008 despite a life sentence, shot Maguire during the getaway. Cinelli, clutching $100,000 worth of stolen jewelry according Ryan, was killed during the shootout.
The state's highest court ruled in 2013 that Hanright could be held criminally liable for actions committed by Cinelli.
Hanright denied that he played an active role in the robbery and specifically denied that he was to serve as a lookout. He claimed he went along with the plan because he was afraid of Cinelli and because he hoped to share in the proceeds from the robbery.
Two other men are awaiting trial for their role in the robbery, including Cinelli's brother.
After disclosure that Cinelli had been paroled despite receiving three life prison sentences, five members of the parole board who voted to free him resigned and were replaced. The number of prisoners paroled in Massachusetts fell dramatically following the death of Officer Maguire.
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