TAUNTON, Mass. (WPRI) — A 23-year-old man has been sentenced to more than five years in prison for an attempted robbery in 2017 that sent a Taunton liquor store owner to the hospital.
Billy Morris, of Taunton and New Bedford, pleaded guilty to charges of assault with intent to rob, assault and battery by discharge of a firearm, and unlawful possession of a sawed-off shotgun, the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office announced.
According to prosecutors, Morris and a 17-year-old held up Eagan’s Package Store on the night of April 27, 2017. The juvenile brandished a sawed-off shotgun and demanded money.
When the owner went to push the gun away, prosecutors said the juvenile fired the weapon, causing her to lose the top of her thumb. She also suffered internal injuries and was taken to Rhode Island Hospital.
The suspects ran off after the shot was fired. They were masked, according to prosecutors, but an anonymous tip led to their identification. At the juvenile’s home, police found the shotgun and clothing that matched the description of the suspect’s.
The juvenile implicated Morris, prosecutors said, adding that police found shoes with his DNA on them in the juvenile’s room. He was later arrested.
The juvenile pleaded guilty in 2019 and is serving a sentence of five to seven years.
Eagan’s was closed after the robbery, but customers showed up at the Cohannet Street business to leave notes of encouragement to the owner who was injured.