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Aiden Fucci Sentenced to Life in Prison

Katherine Zickel 

After almost two years, 16-year-old Aiden Fucci was finally sentenced to life in prison for the murder of 13-year-old Tristyn Bailey on May 9, 2021.

Aiden Fucci, 14 years old at the time, pleaded guilty for stabbing his classmate 114 times. According to First Coast News, Bailey was last seen walking with Fucci in their neighborhood a little before 2 a.m., picked up by a neighbor’s surveillance camera. She was reported missing at 10 a.m., and found in the woods around 6 p.m.. Fucci was arrested the next day. 

News 4 Jax reported that since Fucci is still a minor, he is not eligible for the death penalty in the state of Florida. However, he is being tried as an adult, and is being charged with premeditated first degree murder, according to The Florida Times Union. He faces a minimum sentence of 40 years with a review of his sentence in 25 years, as required by law.

The U.S Sun reported that Fucci’s mother, Crystal Lane Smith, is currently out on bond and awaiting trial for tampering with evidence, a third degree felony. She was caught on camera washing blood off her son’s jeans in the bathroom sink. 

Many of Bailey’s family and friends gave testimonies during the trial. News 4 Jax reported that Tristyn Bailey’s older sister, Alexis Bailey, started her testimony by dropping 114 heart shaped, aqua colored stones into a jar, saying that each one represented a stab wound her sister had to endure. 

Tristyn Bailey’s family asked for the maximum sentence for her killer, saying, “He is beyond saving.”


Richneck Teacher Files Lawsuit

Lindsay Deyton


Following the shooting of 25-year-old Richneck Elementary School teacher, Abby Zwerner, by her 6-year-old student on Jan. 6th, Swerner has filed a 40 million dollar lawsuit against the former Assistant Principal Ebony Parker, the Newport News School Board, former Superintendent George Parker III, and Former Principal Briana Foster Newton, NBC News reports. Zwerner, who was shot in the hand and chest, alleges that administration knew about the student’s past violent behavioral issues and were aware of concerns that he had a gun.

The 6-year-old boy was reported to have a history of aggressive behavior, which includes strangling and choking a teacher, inappropriate touching of another child, chasing students around the playground with a belt, and cursing at teachers and other staff, according to Campus Safety Magazine.

The attorney general for Newport News has confirmed to WTKR that the boy who shot Zwerner will not be charged with aggravated assault, but did indicate that other charges are possible and that the shooting is still being investigated.


Update on Nashville Shooting 

Alyssa Tillman


     Nashville mourns the loss of three students and three faculty members after the shooting that took place at The Covenant School, a private Catholic school, last Monday morning, March 27. According to CBS News, the faculty members have been identified as Katherine Koonce, Cynthia Peak, and Mike Hill. The 3 children have been identified as Evelyn Dieckhaus, Hallie Scruggs and William Kinney. 

     AP News reports that the shooter has been identified as 28 year old Audrey Hale, who was a former student at The Covenant School. The shooter was killed within 14 minutes of the first report of the shooting, an action that police expressed likely saved many lives. 

     Many officials have expressed that this may have been a targeted attack. ABC News reports that Hale had a map of the school with a planned route for the shooting, and officers found writings in Hale’s home shortly after the shooting. 

     Tennessee Governor Bill Lee has called for prayers in the wake of the shooting, and a candlelit vigil was held in Nashville last Wednesday evening in honor of the victims, first lady Jill Biden was in attendance. 


39 Migrants killed in Fire at Immigration Detention Center

Jarrett Connolly


On March 27 around 10 p.m., a fire broke out at an immigration detention center in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. Rescue workers in Mexico reported that 39 migrants, mostly from South and Central America, were killed and 27 were left with serious injuries. 

The center was used by Mexican authorities to temporarily house migrants who were trying to illegally cross into the United States. According to Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, in a press conference with the Mexican media the next day, the fire was started by some of the migrants who lit their mattresses on fire to protest their encroaching deportation; however this has not been officially confirmed by investigators. 

Video surveillance obtained by Mexican media shows several uniformed guards leaving the scene as the fire gets closer, leaving behind several men in a locked cell. Mexican authorities have launched an investigation and have arrested three immigration officers, two private security guards, and one of the migrants who started the fire, The Associated Press reported.

According to El Comercio, protests have since erupted against the mistreatment of migrants and against President Obrador, who blamed solely the migrants for the tragedy.


Finland on Joins NATO Alliance

Cameron Tomaino

On Monday, April 3rd, NATO General-Secretary Jens Stoltenberg said in a press conference before a meeting of NATO’s foreign ministers, that Finland will join the American-led defensive alliance on Tuesday, after the last physical documents are delivered to Washington. This statement comes after Turkey, the last of the NATO member-states still considering the Finnish entry into the alliance, had finally accepted their application on Friday, March 31.

As the world watched Russian tanks roll across the Ukrainian border, starting the first war between two independent states in Europe since World War II, Russia’s other neighbors grew concerned at the displayed aggression. Not long after the invasion, Finland placed an application to NATO at the same time as neighboring Sweden, the two seeking the protection of the alliance to deter this new period of Russian Aggression. Before, the two countries had taken to a policy of strict neutrality.

Though the application process is rigorous, Finland met every requirement, but to get the entire alliance on board, every single member state within the bloc needs to approve of the application. In Sweden’s case, disputes over the extradition of suspected Kurdish terrorists have alienated Turkey from their approval. Among NATO nations, Turkey and Hungary specifically have a history of obstruction and relatively warm relations with Russia, which calls into question their motive to drag out this process over the last year. 

Still, Finland has avoided controversy among NATO nations, and the two holdouts have accepted their ascension to the alliance. Outside of NATO Headquarters in Brussels, the arrangement of thirty flagpoles, each bearing the flag of a member state, will be joined by one more – the Finnish Flag on Tuesday.