The former teenage ward accused of killing a 23-year-old Redwood City man last year after walking away from a juvenile detention camp pleaded not guilty to murder and will stand trial in May.

Adrian Sedano, 18, was only 16 when arrested for the fatal stabbing but prosecutors opted to charge him as an adult. One factor in the decision was his recent walking away from Camp Glenwood, a San Mateo County honor camp in La Honda for wards of the juvenile justice system.

Sedano pleaded not guilty to all charges and was scheduled for trial May 3.

On Aug. 9, 2008, according to prosecutors, he and another man, Christian Lopez, became involved in a fight between a group of girls at the 7-Eleven at the corner of Hess and Woodside roads in Redwood City. The fight continued in front of an apartment complex at 551 Geneva Ave. and the victim was stabbed. Police quickly obtained a search warrant for one of the apartments. Inside, police found Sedano and Lopez arguing with two girls from the earlier fight.

Both were initially charged with murder but prosecutors lowered Lopez’s case to assault with a deadly weapon because he didn’t wield the knife. In April, Lopez pleaded no contest to the charge with no promise of a specific sentence. Lopez was immediately released from custody on his own recognizance pending sentencing Feb. 18.

Sedano’s case, however, stretched through questions of his competency and a preliminary hearing on the evidence. A trio of doctors - a third was appointed to break the tie - in July found him incompetent. Rather than accept that outcome, prosecutors sought a trial on the matter. After a four-day hearing filled with expert testimony, Judge Robert Foiles found Sedano competent. After being found able to stand trial, Sedano was ordered to stand trial after a two-day hearing in which his girlfriend was granted immunity and testified that she washed the knife at his request after the stabbing.

Sedano remains in custody. He returns to court April 6 for a pretrial conference.

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