By NBC News staff and wire reports
SAN RAFAEL, Calif. — Friends of a teenager accused of stealing a $200,000 sports car in a spectacular escapade last year tried but failed on Friday to bust him out of a juvenile detention facility on his birthday, investigators said on Friday.
Max Wade turned 18 on Friday while being held in a juvenile hall in San Rafael on charges he stole a celebrity chef’s Lamborghini in a Hollywood-like acrobatic heist. He also faces a possible life sentence for allegedly shooting into a truck carrying a girl who had spurned his romantic overtures.
Following the botched attempt to free him, Wade was transferred to a county jail, as scheduled, because he had reached the legal age for adult incarceration.
As first reported in the Marin Independent Journal, two suspects tried to cut into Marin County’s juvenile hall at 4:30 a.m. (8:30 a.m. ET) Friday with bolt cutters and a sledge-hammer.
A juvenile hall counselor saw a sledgehammer striking the window of Wade’s cell, said Michael Daly, who runs the facility.
The counselor immediately removed the birthday boy, whose bail is set at $2 million. But whoever was trying to set him free had vanished before law enforcement arrived on the scene.
The San Rafael teen is facing charges of trying to gun down a Mill Valley couple in April, as well as stealing Fieri’s Lamborghini during an elaborate, MacGyver-like heist from a San Francisco warehouse in 2011.
In May, authorities found the $200,000 2008 Gallardo Spyder convertible Lamborghini at a Point Richmond storage unit, while investigating the attempted murder case from the previous month. Also discovered inside the unit: An AK-47 assault rifle, a second assault rifle, shotgun shells, electronics for jamming cell phones, false IDS for California, Florida and New York, and a San Francisco police uniform and badge.
In an interview, Fieri gave “big props” to the police for finding his “yellow Lambo,” and he declined to say much more as the case was being investigated.
Wade has pleaded not guilty to the crimes, and he’s being held on $2 million bail.
His lawyer, Charles Drescow, told the newspaper that he believes the teen’s cases should be tried separately, and the famous Lamborghini charges should be tried in juvenile court.
If convicted of all counts, the newly turned adult could face a maximum of 30 years in prison.
NBCBayArea.com and Reuters contributed to this report.