SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

October 19, 2013

Police: Potential watch-buyer robbed at gunpoint

By Neil H. Dempsey
Staff Writer

---- — SWAMPSCOTT — Police say a man was robbed of $4,500 at gunpoint in the parking lot of Stop & Shop on Paradise Road yesterday after he met with somebody about a Rolex watch that had been advertised on craigslist.

The victim showed up at the parking lot about 2 p.m. to purchase the watch, according to radio reports and a press release from Detective Sgt. Tim Cassidy. When he arrived, he got into the rear passenger seat of a Lexus with three other people inside, including the driver, a heavy-set white man named Mike with black hair, about 30 years old; a thin white female in the front passenger seat, also about 30; and a white man with reddish hair in the other back seat.

When the victim got inside, the man next to him asked for the money. The victim then asked for the watch. The man then pulled out a black handgun, reached into the victim’s pocket and took all the cash, according to the release.

The driver then “ripped” the victim out of the vehicle and threw him to the ground. The three fled the area in the Lexus, which was later located in Gloucester by police in that city.

It was the town’s second armed robbery involving a black handgun and a Rolex watch advertised online since Aug. 9, when a partner in the Four Seasons Motor Group dealership at 460 Humphrey St. met with a potential buyer of a Rolex he’d posted for sale online.

After examining the watch, the suspect pulled out a handgun, took the watch and fled in the direction of Cedar Hill Terrace. On Thursday, police identified the suspect as Brice Charest, a Maine man who was in custody in that state.

Police are investigating yesterday’s incident and urge anybody with information about it to contact them at 781-595-1111.