PEABODY — A Peabody teenager who admitted letting others use his cellphone to lure a pizza delivery driver to a robbery in January was sentenced to a year in prison yesterday.
But prosecutors, an attorney and a judge agreed to an unusual arrangement to avoid sending Jeremy Mack, an 18-year-old former special-needs student, to state prison. They delayed the official start of his prison term until April. Mack will remain held at Middleton Jail until then, receiving credit toward his sentence. He will then be eligible for release, because he will have been held for a year.
Prosecutor Greg Friedholm said the sentence was “proportionate” to Mack’s role in the Jan. 23 robbery, in which three or four other men laid in wait for the driver from Petes-A-Place to deliver a calzone and four subs to an address on Littles Lane. They then ambushed and severely beat the driver.
The men robbed the driver of about $170 and the food, Friedholm told the judge.
Mack, who was 17 at the time, was not present during the beating but did share some of the stolen food afterward, said the prosecutor. And he had also loaned the phone to the same group the previous night for a similar robbery of a Kiki’s Chinese food driver, said the prosecutor.
The only other person charged in the case was Deshawn Huston, 18, of Lynn, who was identified by the backpack he left at the scene, said Friedholm. A neighbor — who was lauded yesterday by a judge for his quick thinking and courage — had found the bag near the scene of the beating and refused to give it back when Huston returned looking for it before police arrived.
In September, Huston pleaded guilty to unarmed robbery and assault and battery charges and was sentenced to 21/2 years in jail, followed by three years of probation.
The victim told Judge David Lowy in a written victim-impact statement that he still suffers from headaches months after the violent attack, during which he was punched and then kicked repeatedly.
Courts reporter Julie Manganis can be reached at 978-338-2521, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @SNJulieManganis.