, Salem, MA

March 14, 2013

DA: Burglar woke victim for the thrill


---- — MARBLEHEAD — It’s the stuff of nightmares: a woman, alone in a large home, awakened by an intruder.

Not only did Sean Raymond Delangis break into the home on Washington Street in Marblehead to steal valuables, prosecutors say, he went one step further: He tapped the 64-year-old woman to wake her up in the early morning hours of July 2, 2012.

He did it, he told her, “for the adrenaline rush,” prosecutor Jean Curran told a Salem Superior Court judge yesterday.

Given the facts of the case, both Curran and the victim are urging Judge David Lowy to impose the 10-year minimum mandatory sentence for burglary and assault in a dwelling, one of three charges lodged against Delangis, 23, of Lynn.

During a hearing yesterday, Curran told the judge that prosecutors are concerned that Delangis’ behavior has been escalating. At the time of his arrest, he was already on probation for another breaking and entering, she said.

Delangis took off his shoes and left his cellphone outside the house, then climbed a fence and got into the home at least twice, according to prosecutors. During one trip, he allegedly took a radio. Then he apparently took a computer, which he left on a roof near a second-floor window.

Investigators believe he went back into the home at that point to wake up the woman. He stood over her bed and tapped her on the shoulder, telling her not to worry, that he was not going to steal anything, according to prosecutors.

The woman told police that she put up a fight, chasing him through the house. At one point, Delangis tried, unsuccessfully, to leave through a sliding door, prosecutors said.

When the two reached the kitchen, the woman said she grabbed a knife. Delangis then dove through a kitchen window, cutting himself, according to prosecutors.

Police later spotted him walking down the street, barefoot, and arrested him.

His lawyer, Nicole Reilly, urged a lesser sentence for Delangis, suggesting that Lowy could sentence him to a shorter prison term and impose probation on the burglary charge, sparing him the minimum mandatory.

Reilly blamed substance abuse and a troubled childhood — she said she had represented Delangis’ father a decade ago in a felony case — for the crime.

“He’s still a very young man,” Reilly told the judge. “A 10-year sentence is his life.”

Lowy scheduled another hearing for March 27, where Delangis will either plead guilty and accept whatever sentence the judge decides to impose or ask to go to trial.

Courts reporter Julie Manganis can be reached at 978-338-2521, via email at or on Twitter @SNJulieManganis.