Updated: Man Wields Machete to Rob Convenience Store

(File photograph)

A 34-year-old man—well-known to police—was arrested and charged with armed robbery after threatening a local convenience store clerk with a machete early last night.

Stephen Soltish, 34, of 16 Seventh Ave., Haverhill, was arrested Monday at 7:46 p.m. in a basement hiding place at 28 Fifth Avenue. He was charged with armed and masked robbery at Tedeschi Food Shop, 5 Dudley St. He was also charged with felony breaking and entering in the nighttime. Following his arraignment this morning in Haverhill District Court, he was held on $25,000 cash bail.

Soltish allegedly entered Tedeschi about 6:30 p.m., “pulled out a machete, slammed it on the counter and demanded the cash registers be opened,” Detective Lt. Robert P. Pistone told WHAV. The clerk was not harmed and the suspect escaped on foot with an undisclosed amount of money.

At the time of the robbery, the suspect was said to be wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and red hat, and was described as having tattoos and other markings on his face, Pistone said. Fitting the description, Patrolman Jamie Landry confronted Soltish, no longer wearing the hat and who showed evidence of having wiped marks from his face. Police said Soltish ran away and managed to escape.

Police, acting on a tip, found Soltish at the Fifth Avenue address. He had cleaning wipes in his possession, which police theorized, he used to remove temporary markings from his face. He also had appeared to have changed his clothes, police said.

A machete was found at 7:49 this morning in the rear of Salvation Army. Pistone said police are “fairly certain” it is the weapon used during the robbery.

In other police news:

Moises Santana, 29, of 3 Dustin St., Haverhill, was arrested Monday at 8:32 p.m. on Primrose Street and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. He also had an outstanding warrant related to destruction of property, resisting arrest, driving with a suspended license and a number plate violation.

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