Friday, January 12, 2018

They Do Everying But Name the Guy a Murderer - UPDATED

The first suspect in criminal homicide cases is usually going to be either the last person who saw (or admitted to seeing) the victim alive, or the victim's spouse (ah, marriage), A good example of the first scenario is this tragic case unfolding right now in Orange County, California. A university student by the name of Blaze Bernstein went missing, and then was found dead over a week later. This article by Kelly Puente in the Orange County Register cites a police document, referring to the "friend" of the victim:
The body of 19-year-old pre-med college student Blaze Bernstein was found Tuesday in brush near a Foothill Ranch park where he went missing more than a week ago, and records show that a high-school classmate who reportedly was the last known person to see him alive appeared nervous when interviewed by detectives.
That's just the start of it.

The friend, who attended Orange County School of the Arts in Santa Ana with Bernstein, told detectives that he spoke with him on SnapChat that night. He agreed to pick up Bernstein and they drove to the parking lot of a Hobby Lobby in Lake Forest to “hang out” and “catch up.”
He said Bernstein then told him they were going to meet up with another friend from high school, and they arrived at the Borrego Park parking area shortly before midnight on Jan. 2, a Tuesday. He said Blaze exited the vehicle and walked by himself into the park.
The friend said he waited for about an hour and tried to contact him on SnapChat. He said he then left at around 1 a.m. and drove to his girlfriend’s house in Tustin and then returned to the park at about 3:40 a.m. after Bernstein still had not responded. During one interview, the affidavit says, he said he did not know her last name.
He's really bad at this, thankfully.

On Jan, 4, two days after the teenager disappeared, detectives spoke with the friend again at Borrego Park and noticed that his hands had several small scratches and abrasions. The friend said the scratches and abrasions were from a “fight club” that he was involved in.

Investigators also noticed what appeared to be “dirt under the fingernails” on both of the friend’s hands. They asked him how his hands got so dirty and the friend said he “fell into a dirt puddle” during the sparring session.
Detectives noticed that the friend was nervous and was “breathing heavy, talking fast and visibly shaking.”
Well that could be anyone in a similar situation to be be fair.
At one point, the friend opened the doors to his rental car and allowed two detectives to look inside.
Why did the guy need to rent a car?

The detectives noticed hiking and camping equipment in the rear of the vehicle, a large empty plastic bin on the backseat, and a black belt on the passenger seat floorboard.
So was Bernstein strangled?

But, the affidavit says, while he had told investigators that he went to his girlfriend’s home after he left Bernstein in the park, he said he could not remember her last name and did not know where she lived.
Um, yeah.
“On their way out of Sheriff’s Headquarters, (investigators) noticed every door (the friend) had to touch on the way out of the building he pulled his jacket over his hand to prevent his hand and fingers from touching any part of the doors he touched.”
His defense attorney will claim he has OCD.

Sigh. I wonder what the motivation was? Rejected sexual advances? Love triangle? Payback for some perceived slight back in high school? I guess we'll find out any day. It's really too bad that the death penalty is a joke in California.

Samuel Lincoln Woodward, 20, was taken into custody Friday shortly after driving from his home in Newport Beach, said Orange County Undersheriff Don Barnes during a press conference hours later. He had been under surveillance, and a mile and a half away he was stopped and apprehended.
If this is the guy who did it, did he really think he was going to get away with it? Did he just not care about going to prison for the rest of this life?

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