ST JOHNS, Fla. — (Note: The video above was originally published on May 18.)
The family of 13-year-old Tristyn Bailey, whose body was discovered in a wooded area of their Durbin Crossing neighborhood over Mother's Day weekend, is sharing their reaction after prosecutors announced Thursday upgraded charges against Tristyn's accused killer.
A grand jury indicted 14-year-old Aiden Fucci on first-degree, premeditated murder charges Thursday, transferring the case from juvenile to adult court. In a news conference Thursday afternoon, State Attorney R.J. Larizza said Tristyn's body was found with 114 stab wounds, including 49 that were defensive.
The number of stab wounds indicates premeditation on Fucci's park, Larizza said.
Despite the gruesome details unveiled in the press conference, the Bailey family statement thanks the community for its outpouring of support.
"With the press conference sharing details of this heinous crime, the caring and love shown from the people and businesses to raise up the memory of Tristyn and the resolve of our community serve as a beacon of light in the darkness," the statement says.
Read the full Bailey family statement below:
"We appreciate that today's outcome is directly the result of the thorough and comprehensive work from the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office along with the 7th District State Attorney's office as part of the initial steps to bring justice for Tristyn's murder. We would specifically like to recognize the Criminal Investigations Unit of the SJSO.
We greatly appreciate the tremendous community outpouring from all parts of the world. Particularly for those in St. Johns that have helped from the Mother's Day search, the vigils, remembrances and memorials. With the press conference sharing details of this heinous crime, the caring and love shown from the people and businesses to raise up the memory of Tristyn and the resolve of our community serve as a beacon of light in the darkness. As shared in the Celebration of Life on the battle of the two wolves, it helps us to feed the good wolf.
We also would like to thank the Jacksonville media for respecting our privacy while we mourn the loss of Tristyn. A special thanks to News4Jax for livestreaming the Celebration of Life to enable people globally to observe the service. We do ask for your continued respect for our privacy as well as of Tristyn's teammates and her school.
As we move forward, we will seek to keep Tristyn's memory alive and the spirit of the community.
The Bailey 7"