Watch thief gets prison in Northampton smash and grab

  • Orlando Wright appears in Hampshire Superior Court on Monday, April 1, 2019.  GAZETTE FILE PHOTO

Staff Writer
Published: 12/23/2019 10:38:59 PM

NORTHAMPTON – The man responsible for stealing seven watches from Hannoush Jewelers on Main Street this spring has been sentenced to four years in state prison.

Orlando Wright, 46, of Greenfield, pleaded guilty to larceny over $1,200 as a common and notorious thief, breaking and entering in the daytime with the intent to commit a felony and failure to appear in court after release on bail or recognizance.

Wright was sentenced on Monday in Hampshire Superior Court to three years in prison on each of the breaking and entering and larceny charges and one year on the failure to appear charge. The three-year terms will be served concurrently with the one-year sentence to be served following those terms. His probation on a wanton destruction of property over $250 charge was also revoked, and he was sentenced to 2½ years in jail, to be served concurrently with his prison sentences.

Judge Richard Carey, who handed down the sentences, recommended that Wright serve them at the Franklin County House of Correction, at the request of his counsel. The sentences were stayed until Jan. 6 and Wright was given credit for 136 days time served.

Two of Wright’s charges stem from an incident in the morning of March 31 of this year, when Wright shattered a display case in the 227 Main St. location of Hannoush Jewelers and stole the watches, one of which was recovered on the ground outside. He was subsequently apprehended with four of the watches, although two of them have yet to be recovered. The stolen watches were valued at more than $3,000.

After Wright posted bail, he failed to make a court appearance on June 21 and was later apprehended in the Berkshires.

Speaking prior to the sentencing, Assistant District Attorney Steven Gagne said that for 20 to 25 years, the only time Wright has not been committing a crime is when he has been incarcerated.

“The only way we can prevent him from committing more crimes, putting the public at risk, is to incarcerate him,” Gagne said. 

Wright’s attorney Jon Heyman said in court that his client is dealing with addiction and mental health issues. He also said that Wright has shown talent as a writer, and has been working on an autobiographical work where he examines some of his past decisions.

“Every step is a step further in a journey that hopefully, he learns from,” Heyman said. 

Sister Clare Carter, of the Peace Pagoda, wrote a letter on Wright’s behalf that was submitted to the court, and she was also present at the sentencing.

Gagne asked the judge for a four-to-five year prison sentence, while Heyman asked for concurrent two-year sentences for the breaking and entry and larceny charges, and a one-to-two year sentence for the failure to appear charge, to be served after the other two sentences. Wright’s sentence means that he could be indicted as a habitual offender on some future  charges, meaning he would be se ntenced to the maxi mum sentence if found guilty.

Correction: Wright’s attorney asked for concurrent sentences on the larceny and breaking and entry charges.

Bera Dunau can be reached at


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