A Dorchester man who allegedly tried but failed to rob a woman at knifepoint at Downtown Crossing last month was arrested last week after detectives managed to track him down as a regular at a Dorchester Star Market, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office reports.
Roger Hines, 29, was arraigned Friday on a charge of assault with a dangerous weapon, the DA's office says. Judge Eleanor Sinnott agreed with a request from prosecutors for bail of $15,000.
According to the DA's office, the woman was waiting for an elevator in the station with her child in a stroller around 7 p.m. on May 7 when Hines approached and asked if he could ride up with them.
When the elevator arrived, the man entered ahead of her, crouched down, and began to reach into his sock. The woman became suspicious of the man’s behavior and attempted to leave the area as the man drew what appeared to be a long, thin knife from his sock, prosecutors said.
The man then fled the station.
Transit Police detectives obtained footage from MBTA public safety cameras that show the suspect in the station around the time of the incident. They also isolated him in footage from JFK/UMass station on prior dates. The footage from those dates depicted him carrying what appeared to be a shopping bag from a supermarket. Knowing that Star Market had a branch location close to JFK/UMass, they interviewed employees at that store and others in the area in an attempt to identify the suspect.
None of the store employees were able to identify the suspect by name, but several of them were familiar with him as a frequent customer known as "Coach" who lived in a nearby housing development. After consulting with other law enforcement agencies, including Boston Police detectives, Transit Police were able to identify the suspect as Hines and matched photographs of him to the public safety camera footage from Downtown Crossing on the evening of the incident.