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Violent crime charges: Delaware teen to be tried as an adult

March 1, 2020 GMT

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — A 17-year-old Delaware boy facing charges of attempted murder, drug dealing, attempted carjacking and other crimes will be tried as an adult, a Superior Court judge has ruled.

The judge on Friday denied a request by attorneys for Devante Wisher to transfer the case to Family Court. Wisher turns 18 in less than two weeks. He has been in custody since July.

Wilmington police have said that a man who was shot in the back in June 2019 told investigators that he had contacted Wisher to buy drugs. The man said he complained about the quality of the drugs and Wisher then grabbed a gun from a nearby vehicle, according to police.

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Officers tried to make a traffic stop in July to take Wisher into custody, but he allegedly put his car into reverse and hit two police cars before speeding off, according to authorities. They said Wisher then crashed into another police vehicle before running away and trying to jump into three other vehicles at a stoplight.

Wisher was finally stopped with a stun gun after he ran into a neighborhood and tried to pull a woman out of her car while her child was in the back seat, officials said.

The judge noted that Wisher has a long criminal history that includes felony charges for drug dealing in 2017 and for possession of a firearm by a person prohibited and carrying a concealed deadly weapon in 2018. Wisher was arrested again last year on multiple counts of drug dealing that remain pending in Family Court. His convictions date to 2016 and include vehicle theft, assault, theft, shoplifting and possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

Wisher is represented by public defenders but the offices were closed over the weekend.