It’s been nearly two years since 13-year-old Tristyn Bailey was stabbed 114 times on Mother’s Day weekend in 2021. Her admitted killer’s sentencing hearing began Tuesday in St. Johns County, Florida.
Early on in the proceedings, the court was shown never-before-released Snapchat footage and reminded of an infamous social media post in which Aiden Fucci, 16, appears to have gloated over his schoolmate’s death and taunted her distraught loved ones.
Sergeant Kurt Hannon, the lead investigator in the case, took the stand and described the initial parts of the investigation – beginning with his assignment – when Fucci was already in police custody.
“I was advised that he was posting to social media from the backseat of a patrol car,” the witness testified.
In response to that, Hannon said, he requested for the defendant’s phone to be seized in order to secure any potential evidence.
More Law&Crime coverage: ‘I’m Going to Get Arrested’: Trove of Prosecution Evidence Exhibits Released on Eve of Aiden Fucci Murder Trial
Prosecutor Jennifer Dunton honed in on the specific app that Fucci was using while detained. The witness noted the teenage defendant appeared to be using Snapchat and that law enforcement later obtained records from the company that proved he was using the app.
Hannon, guided by the prosecutor, then detailed the infamous social media post in question as the state put the image on a screen.
“Just describe what you see here,” Dunton asked.
“Aiden Fucci taking a picture,” the sheriff’s deputy said. “In the reflection of the barrier glass in between the front compartment and the rear compartment of the vehicle where passengers sit.”
In the chilling selfie, the teenage killer throws up a peace sign above his head with the back of his phone covering most of his face.
More Law&Crime coverage: Anybody ‘Seen Tristyn Lately’: Accused Teenaged Murderer Appears to have Snapped a Selfie from the Back of a Police Car Asking For His Alleged Victim
Snapchat, in response to the law enforcement request, also provided the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Department with several piecemeal data files that made up the taunting social media post.
Dunton isolated the text banner used to caption the photo.
“What does it say for the record?” the prosecutor asked.
Hannon then read out the misspelled caption: “Hey guys has inybody seen Tristyn lately.”
The prosecutor then played a video in which the admitted killer pretends his indignation and innocence – while addressing his victim again. Also in the vehicle is another teenager initially believed to have had key knowledge of the gruesome slaying, according to police reports and court documents.
“Having fun in a f—— cop car,” Fucci says as the other boy occasionally interrupts him and the camera angle repeatedly shifts, once catching a smirk from Fucci. “Tristyn, if you f—— walk out the damn–”
Dunton then played another video.
“…cop car, cuz,” Fucci says, addressing the camera head-on. “Trippin’ dude. [inaudible] us in a f—— cop car, cuz.”
Fucci is facing Judge R. Lee Smith, who is taking stock of evidence and testimony from both the prosecution and the defense. The young Florida killer is expected to be sentenced later this week.
Watch the full courtroom interaction and display of the evidence below:
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