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Mother of teenage murder suspect accused of scrubbing son’s bloody jeans, authorities say

St. Johns County Sheriff's Office

The mother of a Florida teenager accused of carrying out a brutal stabbing last month was charged with tampering with evidence on Saturday for allegedly washing a pair of bloody jeans her son had worn, according to an arrest warrant.

Crystal Smith, 35, was booked into the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office Detention in St. Augustine, Florida, on a $25,000 bond, the sheriff’s office said in a news release.

Her son, 14-year-old Aiden Fucci, was charged last week as an adult with first-degree murder for the fatal stabbing of 13-year-old Tristyn Bailey, prosecutors have said. He allegedly stabbed her more than 100 times, according to authorities.

According to an arrest warrant from the sheriff’s office, deputies interviewed the boy, with his mother present, at their residence on May 9 after Tristyn had been reported missing. Video surveillance from the home shows that after the teen left with deputies, Smith went to her son’s bedroom, retrieved what appeared to be a pair of jeans, took them to the bathroom and appeared to scrub them in the sink, according to the warrant.

Later, during an interview at the sheriff’s office, Fucci’s parents asked him about anything that would be on his clothes from the night before, the warrant states.

“(Smith) asked A.F. if he was sure there was nothing on them, A.F. responded ‘I think so, why?’ (Smith) could be observed giving A.F. a questioning look and whispered ‘Blood,'” the warrant states.

The jeans were located during a search of the home and tested positive for the presence of blood, the warrant states. The drain of the bathroom sink where Smith was seen scrubbing the jeans also tested positive for the presence of blood, according to the warrant.

“Crystal Smith will be held responsible for her role in this case and justice will be served for Tristyn Bailey and her family,” the sheriff’s office said Saturday in a news release.

Smith entered the detention facility shortly after noon on Saturday and was released less than two hours later, the facility’s website said. CNN is working to determine if she has legal representation.

Her arrest comes just under a month after Tristyn’s body was found on May 9, hours after her family had reported her missing in St. Johns County, Florida, the sheriff’s office said. There were at least 49 defensive wounds to her head, hands and arms, according to R.J. Larizza, state attorney for the 7th Judicial Circuit.

“To say that it was horrific could arguably be made as an understatement,” Larizza said.

Fucci was initially charged with second-degree murder in connection with Bailey’s killing, but the charge was upgraded to first-degree murder due to the nature of the crime, Larizza said.

Witnesses told authorities that Fucci allegedly made statements that he intended to kill someone by taking them into the woods and stabbing them, prosecutors said. Larizza previously said the teens were seen on surveillance video on the day of Bailey’s disappearance walking together.

CNN has tried to contact an attorney for the boy from the St. Johns County public defender’s office but has not received a response.

The sheriff’s office said the investigation is ongoing.

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