It sounds like the plot of a movie. It happened at 4:30 Friday morning. Investigators say two suspects entered the area near the juvenile hall on foot, leaving their car parked nearby. It was a daring attempt, but the probation chief says it would have never worked.
The suspects involved in the attempted break in fled leaving behind the sledgehammer they used to try to penetrate a wall and shatter two windows. On the other side was Max Wade's 6x9 foot cell. Facility personnel acted quickly. "They reported that a break-in attempt was occurring on the south wall of the housing unit. Specifically, they were hearing thumping sounds from outside," said Lt. Barry Heying with the Marin County Sheriff's Office.
Investigators believe two or more people were involved, breaching two security perimeter fences. They also left some bolt-cutters behind. Wade was the only high-security prisoner inside the juvenile hall facility and the only person in that area. Still, the sheriff's department says there is no evidence that Wade was involved in the attempted break-in. "However, he was aware certainly that he was turning 18 today and it's really no secret that you can't keep adults in that facility. So, I think probably several people could have surmised that a transfer was to occur," Heying said.
Wade, who had been at the facility sine April 28, was transferred to the Marin County Jail Friday morning under heightened security. The 18-year-old is accused of stealing celebrity chef Guy Fieri's Lamborghini. He has also been charged in a Mill Valley drive-by shooting. "He is currently facing two charges of attempted murder. Each of those charges carry a maximum term of imprisonment of 30 years to life," Deputy District Attorney Yvette Martinez said.
There are a number of surveillance cameras outside. Authorities are now looking at that video. They are also reviewing recorded conversations Wade may have had with some of his visitors. One thing the suspects apparently did not know is detention facilities like the one in Marin County are built with thick walls and windows, making them hard to penetrate. "The window is big enough where a body can go through, but again they hit it with the sledgehammer I would say, at least 15 to 20 times. That's what my staff heard, and you couldn't get out," said.
Investigators believe that on their way out, the suspects dropped a backpack with clothes inside on a street in the neighborhood nearby. No ID, just clothes. Their investigation continues.