A Lansdale teen who was charged as an adult with attempted murder for stabbing his two younger siblings at a Hatfield playground has had his case transferred to juvenile court.
Nathan Serrano, 15, was also charged with aggravated assault in February, when police say he attacked his 9-year-old sister and 13-year-old brother with a kitchen knife at the Oak Park Elementary School.
The decision to refer the charges to juvenile court signifies that Serrano will most likely be sent to an inpatient facility to address mental-health issues rather than face a trial that could have led to a criminal conviction and a prison sentence..
Serrano’s attorney, Michael Drossner, said Monday that the decision was made in consultation with the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office.
“We appreciate their recognition that Nathan needs treatment and rehabilitation and doesn’t belong in the criminal justice system,” Drossner said. “Clearly, this was a situation that did not call for punishment and incarceration.”
Serrano’s mother called police on Feb. 22, saying he had attacked his siblings before fleeing the school playground. She told dispatchers Serrano suffers from mental-health issues, according to the affidavit of probable cause for his arrest.
Officers who arrived at the school found Serrano’s 13-year-old brother suffering from 15 stab wounds to his hands, face, and chest, the affidavit said. The boy had also been stabbed in the back, and was rushed to Lehigh Valley Hospital, where he underwent surgery.
Nearby, the officers found Serrano’s 9-year-old sister, who suffered a stab wound to the head. The girl was treated for her injuries and released.