Friend With Dirt Under Nails Arrested in Student's Death


Samuel Lincoln Woodward 20 was arrested in the killing of 19-year-old Blaze Bernstein

Woodward attended the Orange County School of the Arts in Santa Ana with Blaze. Early in the afternoon, authorities stopped Woodward as he was leaving his home in a vehicle and took him into custody.

In a press conference held by the Orange County Sheriff's Department on January 12, authorities confirmed that the suspect taken into custody is Samuel Woodward, 20, who along with Bernstein, attended the Orange County School of the Arts, one of the top schools in the country to study creative writing.

"We do believe Mr". Bernstein's father, Gideon Bernstein, had also worked with friends of the family to conduct independent drone operations. Few details about Woodward were released, though authorities said he was from Newport Beach.

The two knew each other from high school, Barnes said. He said Woodward was arrested based on inconsistencies in his comments to investigators.

Orange County Undersheriff Don Barnes said Woodward was not initially a homicide suspect in the case, but that he had been under surveillance "for some time" as authorities investigated the case. "It scares me" to which Woodward admitted "I wouldn't fight anybody unless they attacked me". His wallet, glasses, credit cards and cash were in his bedroom, but the 19-year-old was nowhere to be found.

In a statement read by their attorney, Bernstein's parents said: "Blaze wanted to make the world a better place. With his death, a handsome life has been extinguished".

"We will continue to search for justice for Blaze and his family". "Our words can not express how grateful the family is to their community".

Friend With Dirt Under Nails Arrested in Student's Death

"Finally. My thoughts are: Revenge is empty". It will never bring back my son. Bernstein's father said he found these notes and sent them to the executive director, Wharton sophomore Rachel Prokupek, to use this coming year. He alleged he returned to the park several hours later but could not find Bernstein. The friend said Bernstein had complained about his grades in school and "seemed depressed but never said anything about wanting to hurt himself".

On Jan. 4, two days after Bernstein disappeared, detectives spoke with Woodward again at Borrego Park and noticed that his hands had several small scratches and abrasions, according to the affidavit obtained by the Register.

Investigators also noticed what appeared to be "dirt under the fingernails" on both of Woodward's hands, according to the affidavit.

When asked why he had dirt under his fingernails, the friend reportedly told police he "fell into a dirt puddle".

On Thursday, a search warrant indicated that the friend, who was not identified, appeared visibly shaken while being interviewed by detectives.

At one point, the friend opened the doors to his rental auto and allowed two detectives to look inside. The friend couldn't remember the last name of the girlfriend he said he went to see later that night and avoided touching doors at the sheriff's offices following an interview, the investigator wrote.

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