ST. JOHNS, Fla. – The mother of Aiden Fucci, the teen accused of killing Tristyn Bailey, is facing a charge of tampering with evidence.
Crystal Lane Smith, 35, was arrested Saturday morning and released later that day on a $25,000 bond. According to her arrest warrant, Smith tried to wash blood off Fucci’s jeans hours after Bailey’s death.
Fucci, 14, is charged with first-degree murder in the stabbing death of Bailey, 13, who was reported missing on May 9 -- Mother’s Day -- around 10 a.m.
Dr. Justin D’Arienzo is a forensic psychologist who is not affiliated with Fucci’s case. He spoke about the charge Smith is facing and what she has been accused of doing.
“Typically, the default mode for parents is reflexive and it is typical to protect their children, but after more thought, often it’s really a question of family loyalty versus tough love,” D’Arienzo said.
After Fucci left with deputies on Mother’s Day, investigators said, Smith was seen on surveillance video inside the home going to his bedroom, grabbing a pair of blue jeans and then scrubbing them in the bathroom sink.
Investigators said Smith was seen speaking with a witness on surveillance camera and that they both inspected the jeans several times before detectives said Smith put the jeans back in her son’s bedroom.
The warrant states that during an interview with his parents at the Sheriff’s Office, Fucci confirmed he was wearing blue jeans the night before and that Smith asked if he was sure nothing was on them.
That warrant states that he replied, “I think so, why?”
Smith was then seen giving Fucci a questioning look and whispered, “blood?,” the warrant states.
“I think she was overcoming doubt at that moment when she was challenging him about the blood, which is a normal response,” D’Arienzo said.
Detectives said the jeans and the drain attached to the sink Smith washed them in both tested positive for blood.