SHAMOKIN - The last man apprehended in relation to an August escape from Northwestern Academy waived his preliminary hearing in district court Tuesday.

Sean D. Watson, 19, of Bowie, Md., waived charges of aggravated assault, conspiracy to commit aggravated assault, theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property, simple assault, harassment, escape and robbery during his hearing before Magisterial District Judge John Gembic III, of Shamokin.

Watson was one of four cadets who escaped from the facility Aug. 28, 2013. According to police, Watson and David Rosario, 18, of Reading, assaulted employee Kip Weir, 44, of Selinsgrove, just before 2 a.m. while he was releasing one of them from a locked room to use the bathroom. Weir said the two locked him in a room, stole his building keys and unlocked a room containing two juveniles, a 16-year-old male from the Washington, D.C., area, and a 15-year-old from the Harrisburg area, letting them escape, too. All four left the building and the campus in Weir's 2007 Toyota Camry.

Rosario was apprehended a day later in Reading, while the 16-year-old turned himself in to Washington, D.C., Metro Police Aug. 30.

Watson was stopped by Rockledge City Police, from Brevard County, Fla., May 21, according to Coal Township Police Chief William Carpenter. Watson was detained in Florida until he was extradited and placed in Northumberland County Prison on $20,000 bail.

Wearing a yellow prison jumpsuit and wrist and leg shackles, Watson waived his right to an attorney for the hearing because a conflict existed with the public defender he was assigned, Melissa Norton.

Assistant District Attorney Michael Toomey said after the hearing they are looking to make a plea deal, similar to what was given to Rosario.

On March 7, Rosario pleaded guilty to charges of aggravated assault and robbery. He was sentenced by county President Judge William H. Wiest to 1 to 3 years in prison and 1 year probation for the aggravated assault charge and 8 to 16 months in prison, running concurrently with the aggravated assault charge, for the robbery crime. He is currently incarcerated in SCI Camp Hill.

Toomey said the only difference in the two cases is Watson is eligible for boot camp confinement.

Watson will appear in Northumberland County Court July 28, when he can either plead guilty or no contest or plead not guilty and seek a trial.


Northumberland County Juvenile Court director William Rossnock reported Tuesday the teen from Washington, D.C., will be adjudicated June 24. Rossnock said the juvenile had to deal with Maryland authorities on a separate incident before the escape from Northwestern Academy could be addressed.

Rossnock could not provide any information on the 15-year-old's case Tuesday.