, Salem, MA

November 29, 2012

Police say man robbed three local stores in 48 hours

By Neil H. Dempsey
Staff Writer

---- — PEABODY — Police say a Lynn man they arrested yesterday robbed three stores in three nights — in Peabody on Sunday, Beverly on Monday and Danvers on Tuesday — and was also responsible for a holdup in Salem on Nov. 16.

Dennis Porter, 43, of 25 Great Woods Road, Lynn, was arrested at a friend’s trailer at 261 Newbury St., Peabody, on a warrant out of Essex Superior Court for a probation violation yesterday morning, after an “intense” multi-jurisdictional investigation, Detective Michael Crane said in a press release. Porter was being held without bail at Middleton Jail last night.

Porter will face a charge of armed robbery in connection to a holdup at Town Variety on Sunday, when a man showed a gun to the store clerk around 8:45 p.m. and stole $2,000 from a lottery machine cash drawer before fleeing with another man in a silver minivan.

Glenn Roderick, 41, of 18 Elm St., Apt. 2, Peabody, was arrested on Monday afternoon in connection to that robbery and has pleaded not guilty. Sgt. Robert Waugh said Porter and Roderick worked together — and that Porter actually went into Town Variety, while Roderick “was the one waiting outside.”

Additionally, Beverly police say Porter was the man who robbed the Sunoco gas station on Brimbal Avenue on Monday night — about 25 hours after the Town Variety incident and eight hours after his alleged accomplice in it was arrested.

In the Sunoco robbery, a man described as being 6 feet tall and weighing 240 pounds walked into the store around 9:45 p.m. and told the clerk, “I’m going to rob you,” then went behind the counter and grabbed cash from the register and lottery drawers.

The suspect, who claimed to have a gun but didn’t show it, made off down Brimbal Avenue with an undisclosed amount of money.

Officer Dave Costa said he expected Porter to be charged today with two counts of armed robbery in connection to that incident — one count for the cash and the other for a cellphone he took on his way out.

“As he was walking out the door, he actually grabbed the clerk’s iPhone,” Costa said.

It was unclear whether Porter acted alone in the robbery, Costa said.

In Danvers, police say Porter is their main suspect in the Tuesday night robbery of Pet Life, during which a man between 40 and 50 years old demanded money from a cashier and made off with about $430, Officer Eric Clarizia said.

The suspect was described as being clean-shaven, with a thin build and strawberry blond hair. He was reportedly wearing a green, hooded windbreaker. No gun was shown, and he was thought to have acted alone.

In Salem, Detective Dennis Gaudet said Porter is the only suspect in the Nov. 16 robbery of the 7-Eleven on Norman Street in Salem, during which a man showed a gun and demanded cash from the store’s register.

Gaudet said police were trying to find Porter when he robbed Pet Life on Tuesday night.

Porter is expected to be arraigned today.

Roderick is due back to court for a status hearing on Dec. 18.