A 14-year-old boy will be tried as an adult for first-degree, premeditated murder in the recent stabbing death of 13-year-old Tristyn Bailey in Florida, officials said.
According to ABC News, Aiden Fucci’s case was taken from juvenile to adult court, State Attorney R. J. Larizza explained at a press conference Thursday.
The report continued:
Fucci was initially charged with second-degree murder but did not have time to enter a plea before his charges were upgraded, the State Attorney’s Office of the 7th Circuit told ABC News. Larizza explained the decision was made to charge him as an adult given the brutality of the case.
Bailey was reported missing to the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office on May 9. Her family said she was last seen around midnight. A sprawling search was launched and at 6 p.m. her body was discovered in the immediate area near a retention pond, according to the arrest report.
Fucci was later identified as a suspect and arrested, the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release May 11.
BREAKING: 14-year-old Aiden Fucci has been charged with 1st degree murder and will be prosecuted as an adult, court filings show. News4Jax will have more updates at 4 p.m. pic.twitter.com/lRikj8Dy3f
— News4JAX (@wjxt4) May 27, 2021
Larizza gave details regarding the killing and said there were 114 stab wounds found on the victim, citing the medical examiner’s report, and at least 49 of the wounds were on the victim’s hands, arms, and head.
“She was fighting for life,” he explained, adding, “To say it was horrific could arguably be made as an understatement.”
We are still looking for 13 year old Tristyn Bailey. We are asking for the community’s help, especially those with school aged children in the northwest part of our county. Any tips, please call 904-824-8304 or email firstname.lastname@example.org pic.twitter.com/pHv66DbLud
— SJSO (@SJSOPIO) May 9, 2021
Larizza also said, “[Fucci] indicated to witnesses that he was going to kill someone by taking them into the woods and stabbing them. The statement that the defendant made to his friends made it clear he was considering a homicide.”
However, Fucci’s alleged statements were not reported to law enforcement, Larizza said, adding the knife he reportedly carried in the attack was located in a nearby pond and its broken tip found in the teen’s skull by the medical examiner.
“I just want to say that I hope parents will learn something from this vicious, and brutal, murder. And that is you need to know what your kids are doing and what they’re saying. While we might not be able stop these vicious and brutal murders from happening, we ought to at least try,” Larizza concluded.