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Texas teen gets five life terms in robberies


SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- An 18-year-old who applied for probation when he pleaded guilty to taking jackets with sports insignia from two middle-school students at gunpoint, holding up two businesses and breaking into two houses has instead been given five life prison sentences.

Mathew Lee Viets received the concurrent sentences from District Judge Mike Machado.

Viets, who pleaded guilty in September to the five charges against him, had requested that the court grant him deferred adjudication, a form of probation that would have allowed his record to show no final convictions if he successfully completed probation.

The charges to which Viets pleaded guilty included three aggravated robberies and two burglaries of habitations.

The three robberies occurred Dec. 12, 1992.

Two boys ages 13 and 14 told police two men pointed guns at them and ordered them to hand over their sports jackets.

Hours later, three masked gunmen walked into a pizza restaurant and demanded money from the cash register and a safe. When the safe produced no additional money, one of the men shot a restaurant employee in the leg.

The third robbery occurred at a fast-food fish restaurant.

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