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2 escape from W.Va. youth center

July 30, 1997

BY DON AINES

Staff Writer, Martinsburg

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Two teenagers escaped from the Eastern Regional Juvenile Detention Center early Tuesday after overpowering a staff member, authorities said.

Martinsburg City Police issued arrest warrants for Miguel "Mike" Quinones, 19, and Adam Rozas, 17, who also have been charged in the theft of staff member Cheryl Lutz's car.

Each has been charged with felony escape, grand larceny auto and robbery, the warrants show. Both were at large Tuesday evening.

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According to allegations in the warrant for Quinones, he overpowered Lutz at about 1:30 a.m., forced her into his room and wrested her keys away from her.

He came back a short time later and demanded her car keys, the warrant states. Lutz told him where they were, but he could not immediately find them, the warrant states.

"I don't want to kill you or hurt you," he told her when he returned, according to the warrant.

The police report said Lutz's gold 1982 Mazda RX-7 with West Virginia registration 3J1365 was stolen.

Quinones' address was listed as 44 Nassau St., Framingham, Mass., but police in that city of 80,000 said they had no criminal record for a Miguel Quinones of his age and address. He is described as Hispanic, 5 feet, 10 inches tall and weighing 180 pounds.

The police report said Rozas has been tried and convicted as an adult, but did not state where or for what crime. Rozas is white, 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighs 145 pounds.

The police report did not indicate why Quinones or Rozas were being held at the center. There was no indication whether any weapons were used in the escape.

The warrant said another staff member reportedly overheard Quinones asking other residents at the center whether they knew how to drive a stick shift. Rozas said he could.

Last year Rozas, who is from Charles Town, was involved in a chase with Maryland State Police in Washington County in which four state troopers were run off the road as they pursued a stolen car.

In an interview last May, Tom Moreland, the center's director, said staff members were underpaid, understaffed and overworked. At that time the center was supposed to have 17 child care workers, but there were only 13, he said.

Child care workers made about $13,000, but Moreland told the Morning Herald that they could earn several thousand dollars more a year in Maryland, resulting in rapid turnover.

Moreland was not available for comment on Tuesday and officials at the detention center would provide no other information.

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