By Team

JOHNS COUNTY (CBSMiami/AP) — A 14-year-old boy charged with murdering 13-year-old Tristyn Bailey stabbed her to death, according to the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday.

According to the medical examiner, Bailey’s death was a homicide caused by “sharp force trauma by stabbing,” stated a news release on the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page.

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The suspect, a classmate, is charged with second-degree murder.

According to the arrest report, there is surveillance video that shows the suspect and Bailey walking together shortly after 1:00 a.m. Sunday. Another video from a nearby home showed the pair walking along a road about 1:45 a.m. The same video showed only the teen walking in the areas at 3:27 a.m., the report said.

Bailey was found dead at the south end of a retention pond about .3 miles from the suspect’s home, just south of Jacksonville.

The arrest report said detectives found evidence related to the clothing seen in the surveillance videos in the boy’s bedroom. And some of the items had a “presumptive positive result for the presence of blood,” the report said.

The suspect made his first appearance in court on Tuesday morning, via a Zoom call which his parents were also on. A judge ordered him held on a second-degree murder charge for 21 days. State attorney’s officials told the judge they would likely have a decision by then on whether he will be tried as an adult.

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The two teens attended the same school, Patriot Oaks Academy, where Tristyn was a cheerleader.

Classmates, friends, and family members gathered for a candlelight vigil Monday night in honor of Bailey.

Tanya White, one of her cheer coaches, remembered the teen’s “beautiful smile and presence.”

“She always was the first to hug me,” White said at Monday night’s vigil. “She was officially my favorite.”
Flowers and notes to Tristyn and her family were left outside the community center where she was last seen.

Her parents reported her missing around 10 a.m. on Sunday and a neighbor found her body in a heavily wooded area that evening, St. Johns County Sheriff Rob Hardwick said during a news conference on Monday afternoon. Hours later, investigators made an arrest.

“The community helped us solve this case,” Hardwick said.

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(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.) Team