A Wadsworth teen hasn’t graduated from high school but is facing a life sentence in prison.

Gavon Ramsay, 17, waived his right to a probable-cause hearing Wednesday morning in Medina County Juvenile Court in the slaying of a 98-year-old neighbor.

Judge Kevin Dunn bound Ramsey over to be tried as an adult in Medina County Common Pleas Court. He set Ramsay’s bond at $1 million and ordered that he continue to be held in the juvenile detention center unless he is transferred to the adult jail by common pleas court.

Ramsay, a Wadsworth High School junior, has denied charges against him of aggravated murder, murder, aggravated burglary and abuse of a corpse. Aggravated murder carries a penalty of up to life in prison.

He is accused of killing widow Margaret Frick Douglas who was found dead in the Portage Street home where she had lived since 1958. Police believe she was strangled April 6, three days before she was reported missing. Officers found her body hidden in a closet under clothing.

Ramsay lived with his family in a home five houses away on Summit Street where Portage Street dead-ends.

Because Ramsay was 17 when the crimes were committed and the charges against him are serious, his bind-over to adult court was mandatory under state law. He was, however, entitled to a probable-cause hearing before the bind-over.

Media members were prohibited from filming or taking pictures of Ramsay because he was charged as a juvenile. That will change when he appears in adult court.

Christine and Steve Ramsay, the teen’s parents, and several family members of Douglas’ family were in court for the hearing Wednesday.

Ramsay showed no reaction as he was led into court wearing shackles past three television cameras.

Dunn asked a deputy to remove Ramsay’s handcuffs so that he could sign a waiver form. The judge noted that Ramsay’s behavior in the juvenile detention center has been “exemplary.”

Ramsay answered questions from Dunn about the rights he was waiving with, “Yes, sir,” and “No, your honor.”

Jocelyn Stefancin, Ramsay’s public defender, argued for her client to receive a “reasonable bond” and not be held without bond.

Medina County Prosecutor Forrest Thompson, however, urged Dunn to impose a bond of not less than $1 million. He noted the “heinous nature” of the crime and the “state of mind of the young man.”

Stephanie Warsmith can be reached at 330-996-3705, swarsmith@thebeaconjournal.com