Suspect arrested in Norton, MA armed robbery

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NORTON — A suspect was arrested Friday in connection with an armed robbery that took place on Oct. 17 at Michelle’s Corner Store located at the intersection of Route 123 and South Worcester Street, according to local police.

Austin Hanlin, 24, of Attleboro, was ordered to remain in custody without bail after an Attleboro District Court judge ruled him a danger to the community during his arraignment earlier this week.

Hanlin pleaded innocent to charges of armed robbery while masked, conspiracy, and assault with a dangerous weapon, as stated in court documents.

Prosecutors claim that Hanlin and another masked individual, both wearing hooded sweatshirts, were the assailants in the robbery, during which a store clerk was threatened with a large knife.

Detective Sgt. Jesse Winters remarked the investigation continues to ascertain the second suspect’s identity.

Authorities issued an arrest warrant for Hanlin after discovering his fingerprints on a blue vodka bottle and a cigarette pack found near the crime scene, as revealed by a prosecutor.

Furthermore, video footage of the robbery was obtained, including a clip that showed the suspects outside the store, with one holding a blue bottle close to where the items were found.

Despite the evidence, Hanlin has maintained his innocence.

His defense attorney, Samuel Hausman of Mansfield, argued that store employees could not identify the robbers and pointed out that the knife-wielding robber had wrist tattoos which Hanlin does not.

During the hearing, the prosecution highlighted Hanlin’s extensive six-page criminal record, which includes past offenses such as breaking and entering, domestic abuse, and violations of restraining orders.

He was previously arrested in December on outstanding domestic abuse warrants by Attleboro police and has been detained since his bail was revoked.

Hanlin is scheduled to return to court for a probable cause hearing on Feb. 27.

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