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Abraham Cintron of Holyoke gets 20th sentence to county jail, avoiding state prison

Cintron, 40, of Holyoke, pleaded guilty before Hampshire Superior Court Judge Mary-Lou Rup to receiving a stolen motor vehicle and operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol (third offense).

Assistant Northwestern District Attorney Matthew Thomas sought a three-year state prison sentence, calling Cintron a “scofflaw” who had not been rehabilitated during any of his 19 prior jail sentences.

“It’s perplexing how so much effort has gone in to rehabilitating a person with so little effect,” Thomas said.

Cintron’s attorney, David Mintz, argued that the notion of 19 sentences wasn’t entirely accurate because many of them were overlapping and some were the result of impositions of previously suspended sentences. Mintz said his client’s 12-page criminal record didn’t tell the whole story.

“You don’t pass judgment based on math and presumptions,” Mintz said in court.

Mintz asked Rup to consider a 2½-year jail sentence, with 14 months to be served directly and the balance suspended, followed by three years’ probation.

Mintz argued that Cintron’s actions were the “failures of a broken man,” stemming from a history of sexual and substance abuse. Mintz said Cintron has finally turned a corner and is ready to accept responsibility, reform himself and move forward.

After reviewing his prior record, which she called “awful,” Rup sentenced him to 2½ years in the Hampshire Jail and House of Correction, followed by five years’ probation.

The first year of that probation, Rup said, would be served under house arrest, with GPS monitoring or while enrolled in an in-house treatment program.

Rup said she was taking personal jurisdiction of the case and any future legal troubles or violations of his probation conditions would be brought directly to her.

“I will not hesitate to impose a state prison sentence,” she said.

“Whatever happens today, I will take full responsibility,” Cintron said during his remarks in court.

On Jan. 20, Cintron was driving a stolen van when a passenger stole a package of roses from the Pride gas station on King Street in Northampton.

Police were notified, spotted the van and gave chase to Easthampton, where Cintron stopped the van, leapt out and ran into the woods, prompting a 30-minute manhunt, Thomas said.

Cintron’s blood-alcohol concentration was measured at 0.19 percent, more than twice the Massachusetts legal limit of 0.08, Thomas said.

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