He told police that he’d stabbed Williams. “I did admit I did stab him a few times,” Adams said in the recorded interview. A detective repeated this statement back to Adams, and the Marine replied, “Yes, sir.”
Adams said he did not know the name of the man who was killed.
At the preliminary hearing on October 15, 2009, the prosecutor played the defendants’ video recording of their police interviews. Defense attorneys focused their attention on persuading the judge to dismiss the special allegations that the prosecutor was pursuing, concerned that the district attorney would seek the death penalty.
At the end of the hearing, superior court judge Joan Weber said of Ramey, “If he wanted to kill the victim, he could have just stuck the knife one time in his heart, and it would have been over. He wanted to stab every inch of this man’s body and kick him and smash his head. And there’s only one reasonable conclusion you can draw from that type of violence.”
Judge Weber ordered both men held on one murder charge and three special allegations: lying in wait, carjacking, and robbery. Ramey was charged with an additional special allegation of torture. The district attorney’s office later decided against pursuing the death penalty. Both defendants now face life in prison if convicted of current charges.
Both men have pleaded not guilty.
On October 18, Judge Weber okayed the bifurcation of the murder trial: the men will be tried separately. Adams’s trial is scheduled for January 25, Ramey’s for March 8. The defendants are next expected in Judge Weber’s Vista courtroom for a hearing on January 5.