MEDINA — The 17-year-old juvenile accused of killing 98-year-old Wadsworth resident Margaret Douglas last month will be tried as an adult in Medina County Common Pleas Court.
“We are here today for a probable cause hearing and transfer hearing for purposes of a bindover and transfer to the adult court,” Juvenile Court Judge Kevin Dunn said during the Wednesday morning hearing for Wadsworth teenager Gavon Ramsay.
Ramsay, who waived his right to a probable cause hearing, is charged with aggravated murder, murder, aggravated burglary and abuse of a corpse.
If convicted, he could face up to life in prison, Dunn said.
In addition to determining that Ramsay met the necessary statutory factors to be tried as an adult, Dunn set Ramsay’s bond at $1 million.
Before setting bond, Dunn asked county Chief Public Defender Jocelyn Stefancin, who’s representing Ramsay, and county Prosecutor Forrest Thompson for their recommendations.
“I simply ask that the court take into consideration his age as part of the considering factors in determining bond in this matter,” Stefancin said. “We know the seriousness of the offense. We would ask that he not be held without bond and that a reasonable bond be granted under the circumstances.”
Thompson, citing the “aggravated nature of the crime” and other factors, requested bond be set at no less than $1million.
Dunn said Ramsay, who has denied all charges, will remain at the Medina County Juvenile Detention Center “until further order of this court or further order of the general division of Medina County Court of Common Pleas.”
Ramsay was arrested April 16 in the Cleveland area after Wadsworth police detectives were notified of his possible involvement in Douglas’ death.
Douglas’ body was discovered April 9 in a closet in her home in the 300 block of Portage Street. It was concealed by various items and clothing. It is believed she died April 6 in the early morning hours, police said.
Wadsworth police Lt. Dave Dorland previously said it is believed Douglas was strangled, and at first there did not appear to be any visible signs of trauma to Douglas’ body.
“It wasn’t until we had a detective that was present during the autopsy and received information from the doctor who performed the autopsy as to what actually did kill her,” Dorland said.
County Coroner Dr. Lisa Deranek did not return messages Wednesday seeking comment on Douglas’ cause of death.
Dorland said Ramsay “lived relatively close by to (Douglas). From what we have been able to determine, he did have some interaction with her a couple years ago.”
At one point, the teen approached Douglas at her home to see if she needed help with yard work or home repairs, Dorland said.