A Frederick man was denied bail Monday after city police said he used a woman to lure another man to a park and rob him at knifepoint in late February.
Oscar A. Bonilla-Martinez, 18, of the 100 block of Kensington Place, was identified as the suspect by police after detectives identified the woman used to lure the other man into the park as Bonilla-Martinez’ girlfriend, according to charging documents filed in Frederick County District Court. A warrant charging Bonilla-Martinez with armed robbery, robbery and second-degree assault was issued Friday and served the next day when he was taken into custody without incident, court records indicate.
The robbery happened at 9:45 p.m. Feb. 20 in Hill Street Park, where the alleged victim arranged to meet with a woman he had been communicating with via social media apps, the documents state. As the couple sat on a bench in the park, a man wearing a ski mask and dark clothing approached them, threatened them with a knife and took the man’s cell phone and the contents of his wallet, the documents state.
Police were notified a short time later and, after several interviews with the alleged victim over the next several days, detectives determined the woman was likely involved in the robbery as the suspect didn’t take anything from her and because, according to the alleged victim, the suspect fled toward an apartment complex where the woman had earlier said she lived, the documents state.
Detectives then identified the woman based on her phone number and, after initially denying any knowledge of the crime, she admitted that her boyfriend, Bonilla-Martinez forced her to take part, according to the documents.
The woman said she was scared of Bonilla-Martinez and did not want to “go against him,” according to the charging documents.
Bonilla-Martinez also agreed to talk to detectives and admitted to robbing the man with a knife. While Bonilla-Martinez said he originally proposed the robbery to his girlfriend, he claimed he abandoned the idea and only decided to go through with the crime after learning that his girlfriend was planning to meet up with the other man, anyway, the documents state.
Frederick County District Court Judge Dino E. Flores Jr. heard arguments from prosecutors and an assistant public defender appointed to represent Bonilla-Martinez in district court late Monday morning. Assistant Public Defender Ashley Sener encouraged the judge to consider releasing Bonilla-Martinez with conditions, pointing to her client’s lack of prior convictions and his strong familial ties to Frederick. “He is very concerned because he is the sole provider for his family,” Sener told Flores, explaining that Bonilla-Martinez lived with his single mother and two brothers.
Flores said he found the facts of the case “extremely dangerous” and denied Bonilla-Martinez bail.
Bonilla-Martinez’s next scheduled court appearance was a preliminary hearing tentatively set to take place June 17, according to an online search of court records.