Teen fugitive captured

August 21, 1997


Staff Writer, Charles Town

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - Police Wednesday captured a 17-year-old Charles Town youth who escaped from the Eastern Regional Juvenile Detention Center in late July with a convicted murderer, officials said.

Adam Rozas was back in custody at the juvenile detention center Wednesday night after being charged with robbery, escape and grand larceny.

Rozas allegedly fled from the juvenile detention center with convicted murderer Miguel Quinones, 19, on July 29, court records said.

Quinones allegedly overpowered guard Cheryl Lutz and took her car keys. He returned moments later and asked if any of the others being held at the juvenile detention center knew how to drive a stick shift, investigators said. Rozas said he could.


Rozas had been convicted in June as an adult for two counts of possession of stolen vehicles and had once led Maryland State Police on a wild, high-speed chase that caused injuries to two troopers in Washington County.

Rozas fled with Quinones and investigators said they had no information on their location until Wednesday afternoon when 911 dispatchers received a tip from an unidentified caller that the two had been spotted at an apartment complex.

Jefferson County sheriff's deputies, West Virginia State Police troopers and Charles Town and Ranson police officers swarmed over the area.

Jefferson County Sheriff's Lt. Kenneth Mills and State Police Trooper G.S. Petsko spotted the two about the same time.

The two teenagers did not resist.

Rozas had an identification card with the name Eduardo Perez, said Chief Mike Aldridge of the Charles Town Police. Rozas gave the name to the police, but a Ranson Police officer recognized him from a prior case, police said.

The other teenage boy was fingerprinted but released after police received confirmation that he was not Quinones.

Jeffries said investigators believe Rozas had been in New York, where the stolen car was recovered, and returned on Tuesday.

Investigators said they do not know where Quinones is.

Quinones had been convicted of killing a man in Fayette County, W.Va., two years ago. He was being housed at the detention center while appealing the case.

In addition to the motor vehicle theft conviction in Jefferson County, Rozas had been involved last year in a stolen car chase in Washington County with Maryland State Police. He was being held at the juvenile detention center while awaiting placement at the Anthony Center for Youthful Offenders in Neoloa, W.Va.

Though he had been convicted as an adult in the motor vehicle theft case, Jefferson County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Bernice Weinstein said Rozas would be considered a juvenile in the latest charges until a judge rules otherwise.

Berkeley County Prosecuting Attorney Pamela Games-Neely said there will be a hearing before Circuit Judge Thomas Steptoe to determine whether Rozas could be tried as an adult on the escape and robbery charges.

Visiting Magistrate Donald Sharpe set Rozas' bond at $300,000 and he was taken back to the detention center.

Staff writer Don Aines contributed to this story.

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