SAN RAFAEL (CBS SF) – Seventeen-year-old Max Wade already had a flashy yellow Lamborghini but he wanted the beautiful blonde girl to go with it and was willing to kill for it, a Marin County prosecutor told the jury at the beginning of the teen’s trial Friday morning.
Wade, now 19, is charged with stealing the expensive sports car owned by celebrity chef Guy Fieri from a San Francisco dealership on March 8, 2011.
Deputy District Attorney Yvette Martinez told the jury Wade stole the Lamborghini during an “elaborate ‘Mission Impossible’ burglary” and used the car to try to impress Eva Dedier, now 19, a girl to whom he had provided false identifications.
“The defendant became infatuated with a beautiful girl, and Landon Wahlstrom was the only one standing in his way,” Martinez said.
On April 13, 2012, Wade, dressed in black from head to toe, including gloves and a helmet with a visor, pulled his motorcycle alongside Wahlstrom, now 20, who was with Dedier in his parked Dodge truck in Mill Valley, Martinez said.
Wade fired five shots at them through the driver’s window from a .38-caliber revolver, Martinez said.
The two teens ducked and were not hit by the bullets, Martinez said. Dedier said the shooter looked directly at her and paused before he took the gun out of his waistband and fired, Martinez said.
The prosecutor said Wade’s plan to kill his romantic rival and the girl who spurned him was sophisticated and premeditated.
Martinez than previewed the evidence she will present to convince the jury to convict Wade of charges of attempted murder, burglary at the auto dealership, possession of a stolen vehicle and driving a stolen vehicle.
Video will show Wade with the visor of his Bilt helmet down over his face paying for gas inside a Mill Valley gas station before the shooting, Martinez said.
Another video will show Wade on the Honda motorcycle—with a license plate stolen from another motorcycle—driving south across the Golden Gate Bridge after the shooting, Martinez said.
The jury will also watch a video that shows Wade purchasing the black clothing and distinctive helmet at the Cycle Gear shop in San Francisco the evening before the shootings, as well as another video showing Wade inside a storage locker in Richmond, where his motorcycle and Fieri’s 2008 Lamborghini Gallardo were found, according to Martinez.
Computer evidence will include Wade messaging a friend, “It doesn’t get any better than boosting Lamborghinis and getting chicks at 17,” and Google searches of news articles about the shooting and Lamborghini theft and about the equipment and tactical attire required to rappel from the roof of an auto dealership into a window, Martinez said.
After Marin County sheriff’s detectives identified Wade as the person who bought the clothing at Cycle Gear and as the suspect in the shootings, they told Dedier not to contact him, Martinez said.
But Wade called Dedier and offered to meet her and give her a false identification, Martinez said. Detectives told Dedier to agree.
On April 28, 2012, Wade left the Richmond storage facility in the Lamborghini to meet Dedier, but before he arrived in Mill Valley, Dedier canceled the meeting, according to Martinez.
Wade turned around and drove back to the storage facility, where detectives were waiting. After he spent some time in the storage unit, he left and walked toward the detectives, Martinez said.
Wade stopped, then ran but was knocked to the ground, Martinez said.
Wade tried to get a handgun out of his waistband during a struggle but was arrested without any shots being fired, the prosecutor said.
Inside the storage facility, detectives found the clothing and helmet Wade purchased and wore during the attempted murders, the revolver, and the Honda motorcycle, Martinez said.
Tests also determined the revolver had been fired five times and the motorcycle helmet contained Wade’s DNA, she said.
“I will ask you to return guilty verdicts on all charges,” Martinez told the jury.
In his opening statement, defense Attorney Charles Dresow told the panel Wade’s DNA was not on or in the clothing in the storage facility, and there was no gunshot residue on the clothes or the gloves.
Dresow disputed the prosecution’s assertion that the shootings were premeditated. He said Dedier and Wahlstrom said Wade could not have known they were together at Wahlstrom’s Mill Valley home the evening before and the day of the shootings.
Dresow said there is no evidence Wade followed them there the night before.
He asked, “Where is the premeditation evidence?”
Dresow also said there was DNA on the revolver from “multiple contributors.”
“None match Max’s (DNA),” Dresow said.
“This case is more about the evidence the district attorney can’t show than what they can show,” he said.
Both the shooting and the Lamborghini theft happened, but Wade didn’t commit the crimes, Dresow said.
He asked the jury to keep a clear eye, an open mind and an unbiased heart.
“I will ask you to return not guilty verdicts on all counts,” Dresow said.
The trial before Judge Kelly Vieira Simmons resumes Monday and is expected to take several weeks.
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