A Frederick County judge ruled Wednesday a teen accused of attempted murder for an alleged stabbing will be held without bail and confined to the adult detention center.
William Romero-Cortez, 17, of Springfield, Virginia, faces charges of attempted first-degree murder, first- and second-degree assault and reckless endangerment. His case is currently in adult court, but a study will be conducted to determine whether the case is moved to juvenile court.
The charges were read into the record in Frederick County District Court Wednesday afternoon, but charging documents were not yet available due to the defendant’s age.
The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office apprehended Romero-Cortez after finding a 27-year-old man, also of Springfield, suffering from multiple stab wounds at 4949 New Design Road in the Ballenger Creek area of Frederick around 3:15 a.m. Tuesday.
The victim and defendant were reportedly in a vehicle together before the stabbing occurred, prosecutor Rebecca Clinton of the Frederick County State’s Attorney’s Office said in court. Romero-Cortez allegedly told police the victim insulted him, Clinton said, and the teen wanted to “scare” the man.
With a knife he reportedly used for work, Romero-Cortez allegedly sliced the man’s throat, Clinton said. The victim also suffered wounds to his hand, arm, calf and face, she said. The victim fled and hid in the nearby Mattress Warehouse facility, according to Clinton. The victim was flown to a shock trauma center and later released after undergoing surgery.
Public defender Laura Garcia argued the teen should be kept in a juvenile facility, noting he has no known prior criminal record. Garcia declined to comment after the hearing.
Judge Janice Ambrose denied the defense’s request to have the defendant transferred to a juvenile facility, noting the serious nature of the allegations, reportedly strong witness interviews and the fact that the defendant is two months shy of turning 18.
Clinton acknowledged the Frederick County Adult Detention Center is equipped to keep juveniles safe.
A preliminary hearing is set for July 6.