- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 3, 2011

A man accused of fatally stabbing his wife as she slept and fatally beating his stepson with a baseball bat was ordered held without bond Thursday in Montgomery County District Court in Rockville, officials said.

Curtis Maurice Lopez, 45, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of estranged wife Jane McQuain, who was found Oct. 12 beaten and stabbed to death in her Germantown apartment. Charges in the boy’s death are forthcoming, prosecutors said.

Neither Ms. McQuain nor her son, 11-year-old William McQuain, had been seen since Oct. 1. Police began a large-scale manhunt for William after his mother’s body was discovered. He was found dead Oct. 18 in a wooded area in Clarksburg. Prosecutors said his skull was crushed in multiple places and a baseball bat was found near his body.

Prosecutors said Lopez picked the boy up from a sleepover Oct. 1 and was seen on surveillance cameras at a storage facility and gas station that day near where William’s body was found.

In the video, William was wearing the same clothes that were found on his body. Montgomery County Police said he appeared to be in a “playful mood with no signs of stress.” Witnesses also recalled seeing Lopez, who did not live with Ms. McQuain, moving items out of her apartment sometime in early October.

Lopez was arrested Nov. 2 at a hotel in Charlotte, N.C., while in possession of Ms. McQuain’s sport utility vehicle. He carried one of her credit cards and 18 copies of their marriage certificate, according to a search warrant filed in the case. A 24-year-old woman with Lopez when arrested at the hotel said she was his girlfriend and thought the SUV belonged to Lopez’s mother.

Lopez was returned to Montgomery County this week to face charges.

Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy has not ruled out seeking the death penalty in the case, though he said it’s unclear at this point whether the crime meets Maryland’s stringent requirements for capital punishment.

Lopez, who was previously convicted of attempted murder in Pennsylvania, is scheduled to next appear in court Dec. 2.

*This article is based in part on wire service reports.

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