Teen accused in West-Liberty Salem shooting to be evaluated

FILE - Ely Serna (WDTN Photo/Charlisa Gordon)

URBANA, Ohio (WDTN) – The teen accused in the January shooting at West-Liberty Salem school will be evaluated for competency before a decision is made on moving the trial to adult court.

17-year-old Ely Ray Serna appeared before a judge in juvenile court Friday for a hearing on filings that have been made in the case.

Serna is accused of shooting two students at West Liberty-Salem High School on January 20 critically injuring 16-year-old Logan Cole. Another student received minor injuries.

READ MORE: Officials: ‘More would have been wounded’ in school shooting if not for staff, deputies

One of those motions was to determine competency. That motion was granted by the judge and Serna will undergo an evaluation.

The court will not decide if Serna’s case will be moved to adult court until that evaluation is completed. Once the evaluation is complete the court will have three options:

  • The case will be kept in Juvenile Court
  • Serna may be classified as a Serious Youth Offender
  • The Prosecutor may request Serna be tried as an adult, which will necessitate a new hearing

The lawyer representing Serna, Dennis Lieberman, asked the court to release his client to his parents, but Prosecutors argued he’s a threat to himself and the community. The Judge sided with Prosecutors and Serna will remain in custody at the Central Ohio Youth Center in Marysville.

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