A Florida teenager pleaded guilty Monday to stabbing a 13-year-old schoolmate to 114 stabbings in 2021.
The plea agreement was reached as jury selection was set to begin Monday morning for the trial of Aiden Fucci for first-degree murder. Fucci was 14 when he murdered Tristyn Bailey, prosecutors said.
“I just want to say that I plead guilty and I’m sorry for the Bailey family and my family,” Fucci, 16, told the judge in St. Augustine.
The judge accepted the plea agreement and said that Fucci’s sentencing will be scheduled for a later date. The teenager faces a life sentence.
The girl’s family reported her missing on Mother’s Day 2021 and her body was found in the woods after a one-day search. Evidence, including video footage from a surveillance camera, led detectives to Fucci. He was originally charged with second degree murder, but the charge was updated due to the seriousness of the crime.
RJ Larizza, state attorney for Florida’s Seventh Judicial Circuit, said during a news conference after Fucci’s arrest that Bailey was stabbed 114 times and that at least 49 of her injuries were to the hands, arms and head, and were defensive in nature. .
In a statement released Monday, St. Johns County Sheriff Robert Hardwick acknowledged the work investigators did on the case.
“This was a 100% agency effort,” the police chief said in a statement. “The trial preparation process is as tedious as the investigation itself. Detectives have not stopped working on this case since we first received the call.”
Hardwick stressed that detectives worked in collaboration with the state attorney’s office to get the case closed.
This story was originally published on February 6, 2023 1:29 p.m.
Source: El Nuevo Herald