Crystal Smith, Aiden Fucci’s mother, was put in jail just after noon on Saturday and released at 1:40 pm by the St. John’s County Sheriff’s Office
The mother of the 14-year-old Florida boy who allegedly stabbed a 13-year-old cheerleader to death 114 times has turned herself in to authorities after she was suspected of tampering with evidence, investigators said.
Crystal Smith, Aiden Fucci’s mother, was put in jail just after noon on Saturday and released at 1:40 p.m. by the St. John’s County Sheriff’s Office, according to WTLV TV.
Smith is said to have been caught on surveillance footage entering her son’s bedroom after his arrest on May 10. She would have picked up a pair of bloodstained jeans, cleaned them and then put them back in the bedroom.
Investigators returning to the house after Fucci’s arrest took the jeans from his bedroom. They then ran tests that showed traces of blood on the jeans and in a bathroom drain.
Aiden Fucci appeared in court last Friday (May 28) via Zoom to be charged as an adult for the murder of cheerleader Tristyn Bailey, who, according to prosecutors, was stabbed 114 times in a cold-blooded murder.
Fucci was arrested on May 10, a day after the body of 13-year-old Tristyn was found covered in knife wounds in St Johns, Florida.
He was pictured in a new mugshot released last Friday, after charges against him were upgraded.
Initially, Fucci was charged with first-degree murder as a minor, but prosecutors debated for weeks whether they should upgrade that charge to first-degree murder and whether they should treat him as an adult.
On May 27, the prosecutor did just that, filing paperwork to charge Fucci as an adult with first-degree murder.
It is a capital offense that carries the death penalty for anyone who has committed the crime over the age of 15. He misses that future sentence by just a year.
State attorney RJ Larizza gave harrowing details at a press conference afterwards, saying it was a “sad” but easy decision given the brutality of the murder, and said his office will seek life without parole.
Fucci did not speak at the May 28 hearing. He is being held without a bond.
Aiden Fucci appeared in court on Friday, May 28 via Zoom to be charged as an adult for the murder of cheerleader Tristyn Bailey, who, according to prosecutors, was stabbed 114 times in a cold-blooded murder.
Fucci in court via Zoom on Friday, May 28, wearing a mask. He is being held without bond in prison
Prosecutors said they would like life without parole, but Aiden will likely be able to appeal, as part of a wider, ongoing effort to reduce sentences for minors in Florida.
Prosecutors have yet to reveal whether there was any evidence of sexual assault, or whether they honed a motive. They did say that Fucci had told friends he planned to kill “someone” in the woods and that Tristyn might just be in “the wrong place at the wrong time.”
Larizza revealed that Aiden had told friends he was going to kill “someone in the woods” before killing Tristyn, saying it was “disturbing” that it wasn’t taken seriously.
“You heard that our victim Tristyn was stabbed – to say it was horrific would be an understatement. The coroner performed an autopsy on our victim and determined with confidence that there were 114 stab wounds.
Tristyn Bailey, 14, died fighting for her life as Fucci stabbed her 114 times14
“At least 49 of them were on the hands, arms and head and were defensive.
“Premeditation can be inferred from the sheer number of stab wounds Tristyn Bailey has suffered. Every time that arm went back, and every time that arm went down, it was premeditated and it happened 228 times.
“It’s not just the fact that she was stabbed 114 times, it’s information we were able to get from witnesses.
“The suspect has stated to several people that he intended to kill someone. He didn’t say who that was, but indicated he was going to kill someone by taking them into the woods and stabbing them, which are certainly the facts of this case.’
“A knife was found in the pond, very close to our victim’s body. The point of the knife was found in our victim’s scalp by the coroner.’
Larizza said he had never dealt with such a violent crime in his entire career.
He said DNA evidence helped solidify his decision – Aiden’s DNA was found on Tristyn and Tristyn’s was found on Aiden’s clothing and the knife.
“The youth system is for kids who may have drug problems, or who commit nonviolent crimes,” Larizza said, explaining his decision to sue Fucci as an adult.
“When you have kids that get to his level of violence, the time and responsibility isn’t there, the adult system is where this thing belongs.
“It was not a difficult decision to make. It’s a sad decision and a sad state of affairs, but it was clear to us after looking at what happened that not only was it appropriate, but it was really the only choice we could make.
Aiden posted this selfie on social media after he was taken in for questioning. Sheriffs say ‘outrageous’ post shows he was proud of what he did
Tristyn’s family reported her missing on Sunday at 10 a.m. She was last seen by them at midnight, and police say she was last counted around 1.15am. Her body was found on Sunday at 6 pm
State attorney RJ Larizza said Thursday it was a “sad” but easy decision to sue Fucci as an adult and they had no other choice given the gravity of the crime.
The teens were last seen near the Durbin Amenity Center in St John’s at 1.45am. It’s unclear what she was doing there or whether Aiden was with her
“She was fighting for her life. It’s just sad that we even have to talk about it,” Larizza said on Thursday.
He added that there was no indication that Fucci suffers from mental health problems or had sought treatment for them. He declined to say whether Fucci confessed to the murder.
“These kids, they’re teenagers, they have their groups and their hangouts. It started as a couple of kids getting together and hanging out, but it didn’t end that way,” he said.
In Florida, premeditated murder can become premeditated murder if prosecutors can prove that the murder was “particularly heinous, abominable or cruel” or if it was “committed on a cold, calculated, and premeditated basis without any pretense of morality.” or legal justification.’
Sheriffs were strong in their criticism of Fucci and unquestioning in their public disgust at the way Tristyn died.
She was stabbed a “horrific” number of times in a “cold-blooded” murder case, St. Johns County Sheriff Rob Hardwick said earlier this month.
Tristyn was found hours after she disappeared by a local resident who was out for a walk.
Surveillance camera footage allegedly showed the victim and Fucci walking to the site where her body was dumped on the night of her disappearance, after which Fucci walked back alone.
He had posted a selfie from the back of a police car on Snapchat with the hateful caption, “Has anyone seen Tristyn?”
That photo sparked outrage, with the St John’s County Sheriff’s Office later having to explain that Fucci had been taken in for questioning at the time as a person of interest, meaning he hadn’t been arrested, handcuffed or had his phone taken from him.
Larizza said on Thursday that the Snapchat post indicated that he had no regrets about his actions, and that prosecutors will now use it to strengthen their case against Fucci.
Fucci’s next performance has not yet been scheduled.