Trial Date Set For Man Accused of Killing Estranged Wife, Stepson

Murder suspect is ‘nervous’ he could face death penalty, WTOP reports.

Trial date has been set for a man accused of murdering his estranged wife and her son.

Curtis Maurice Lopez, 46, will be on two counts each of murder and kidnapping and one count of robbery following the October deaths of Jane McQuain and her 11-year-old son William, whose body was found in a wooded area off Clarksburg Road.

Mongomery County Circuit Court Judge John W. Debelius III set the date for July 10, according to Circuit Court records accessed online.

Montgomery County Deputy States Attorney John Maloney told the judge, WTOP reported Friday, that prosecutors were still waiting on DNA results.

Under Maryland law, prosecutors need a confession or biological or video evidence of the crime to qualify for the death penalty.

If the case doesn't warrant the death penalty, Lopez faces up to life in prison without parole for the murder charges, 20 years for kidnapping and 15 years for the robbery count.

Public defender Alan Drew reportedly told WTOP that Lopez was aware that prosecutors were seeking the death penalty and was “nervous.”

Lopez was indicted in December for the murders.

Police trace their investigation back to early October after Jane McQuain, 51, failed to arrive at work, .

On Oct. 12, police officers and rescue personnel entered McQuain's Germantown apartment through a second-story window. They found her dead in her bed. An autopsy revealed she suffered blunt force trauma to her head and was stabbed twice in the back, police said.

Her 2011 Honda CRV was missing along with a flat-screen TV and a lamp. Investigators began a nationwide search for her son, William McQuain.

The next day, Lopez was arrested in Charlotte, N.C., with McQuain's Honda, police said.

On Oct. 18, in a wooded area in Clarksburg. His skull had been crushed, police said. A baseball bat, thought to be the murder weapon, was found nearby. Surveillance footage from a nearby gas station showed Curtis Lopez and William McQuain together on Oct. 1. Investigators believe Lopez murdered the boy then.

Both kidnapping charges involve William, Maloney told Patch in December. According to police, the boy was taken from a friend's home and then to several places in the county before he was killed.

The robbery charge relates to the stealing of Jane McQuain's vehicle and other personal property, police said.

Tiffany Arnold April 12, 2012 at 03:16 AM
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