MARSHFIELD — A man sentenced to life in prison for raping a 72-year-old widow and other crimes during a double armed robbery in 1982 will be released on parole.

On July 6, the state's parole board made the decision to release David Williams after he spent nearly 40 years behind bars on armed assault, armed robbery, burglary, and other charges. He had previously been denied parole four times.

Williams was arrested with a co-defendant after the pair broke into the homes of two elderly women, one in Marshfield and the second in Pembroke, and robbed them in June 1982.

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According to a parole board decision denying Williams parole in 2014, the first home they broke into was in Marshfield.

The unnamed victim reported that she was asleep in bed when she heard someone in her home.

Williams, then 29 years old, came into her bedroom, placed a gun to her throat, and asked for her money and valuables.

According to the written decision, after finding just $7 in her purse, Williams demanded she tell him where her diamonds were or he would rape her — but she didn't have any, so he carried out the threat.

The two men then went to the Pembroke home of another elderly woman, tied her up, choked, beat her, knocked her unconscious, and ransacked the house.

They were caught shortly afterwards.

Williams had an "extensive" criminal history with 63 prior arraignments, according to the parole board, and had once escaped from the Worcester House of Correction while on furlough.

The parole board decided not to grant him parole in 2014 due to his documented refusal to complete sex offender treatment while incarcerated.

"Board Members expressed their concerns that, after thirty years, Mr. Williams is now admitting to raping the victim and he has not completed sex offender treatment," they wrote in 2014.

This despite his completing other institutional programming including substance abuse programs, alternatives to violence, and others, along with earning a Bachelor's Degree from Boston University as well as a state welding license.

Since 2014, Williams has completed the full sex offender treatment program as well as other recommended programming and is close to completing a master's degree, the board wrote in its July 6, 2022 decision.

He has also "become a peer leader and helps other inmates in the programs," the board noted.

Williams will be released into transitional housing and will be subject to a curfew, electronic monitoring, and drug and alcohol testing.

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