Diego Evangelista Da Silva, 33, faces up to 20 years in federal prison and then deportation on a federal charge for an April armed robbery at Lanzilli Groceria, 931 Bennington St. in East Boston.
After holding up the market, around 9:30 p.m. on April 21, Da Silva, wearing a "Weston Hockey" jacket, then walked across the street to a Subway, where he ordered a sub and called a cab to take him home to Washington Park in Chelsea, according to an affidavit by an ATF agent on the case. The affidavit does not specify the kind of sub.
Da Silva, whom police suspect was also the guy who held up 11 other stores and gas stations in East Boston, Malden, Somerville, Chelsea, Everett and Revere, is a Brazilian national. He was charged under the federal Hobbs Act, which is more typically used in extortion cases, but which does also cover robbery.
According to the affidavit, Da Silva walked into the market, gave the clerk a note demanding money and then lifted up his shirt to show a gun in his waistband. After getting his sub and a cab, he got back to Chelsea around 10 p.m., according to surveillance video of Washington Park.
During a stake out a few days later, police watched Da Silva drive off with a woman and a four-year-old child. They stopped the car in Everett, after a database check showed the car's registered owner did not have a license. Inside the car, in addition to the two adults and child, they found a gray cap similar to the one worn by the Lanzilli suspect and, under the driver's seat, a realistic looking BB gun,
After being read his rights and being booked, the affidavit continues, Da Silva:
[A]dmitted to robbing Lanzilli's on April 21, 2020. Da Silva also admitted committing a series of eleven other armed robberies (total of twelve) in the Greater Boston area over the last few months. Da Silva was shown video surveillance photos taken from each of the robberies and wrote his initials next to surveillance photos identifying himself as the Suspect in each of these incidents.
Da Silva's robbery spree started Jan. 4 at the Ferry Street CVS in Malden and ended with the Lanzilli robbery, the affidavit continues. In addition to the market, Da Silva also acknowledged holding up the Mobil station at 396 Chelsea St. on Jan. 13, the Walgreens in Central Square on March 10 and the CVS at 210 Border St. on April 14.