An Independence teenager accused of stabbing a city volunteer at the Bingham-Waggoner Estate in June and stealing her car will face charges as an adult.
Jackson County prosecutors have now charged Selvin Cruz, who turned 17 years old Thursday, with first-degree assault, first-degree robbery and two counts of armed criminal action. Jackson County Family Court this week certified Cruz to face charges as an adult.
Late afternoon on June 17, Independence Police responded to the historic estate on Pacific Avenue on a reported stabbing. The officer found the victim sitting on a pathway with stab wounds to her face and torso. The woman, a volunteer worker at the mansion, said the defendant approached when she pulled into the parking lot, then demanded her car keys when she got out. He shut the car door, and when she refused to hand over the keys he stabbed her with scissors.
She tried to get away and again refused to give up the keys, and then Cruz allegedly grabbed her head and stabbed her again before wrestling the keys away. The victim said she was able to get her purse out of the passenger seat as the defendant drove away, then managed to get to a sidewalk and called 911.
At the scene, police found an open beer can, a pair of red-handled scissors and a several fingerprints off another car the suspect had been prowling prior to the victim driving into the parking lot. Police also recovered surveillance video that clearly showed the incident.
About three hours after the stabbing, a patrol officer spotted the stolen car just a few blocks from the estate. When he tried to pull it over, Cruz initially refused and start yelling at police, then stopped and tried to run away. By that time, a K-9 police dog had arrived on the scene and quickly helped capture Cruz. Medical personnel cleared Cruz to be taken to detention and then Family Court.
Police recovered shorts and a cell phone from Cruz seen in the video. Searching his bedroom a couple blocks from the estate, they found clothes matching those seen on camera, as well as an open case of beer matching the brand found on scene.