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Friend With Dirt Under Nails Arrested in Student's Death

Friend With Dirt Under Nails Arrested in Student's Death

The Orange County Sheriff's Office says Samuel Woodward, 20, was taken into custody Friday in the death of 19-year-old Blaze Bernstein.

Barnes said Bernstein and Woodward had attended the same high school, identified in the warrant as the Orange County School of the Arts. Woodward allegedly drove Bernstein to Borrego Park at 11 p.m. January 2, allegedly to meet someone else.

"We Do Believe Mr".

"We do believe Mr".

Barnes said there were inconsistencies with Woodward's account of what happened. Details of Bernstein's death aren't being released.

News of Woodward's arrest comes two days after Bernstein's identity was confirmed as the body found the day prior.

On Friday, authorities were able to tie Woodward's DNA to evidence of interest to the investigation, Barnes said. When Bernstein didn't return, Woodward said he left.

At the press conference, Annee Della Donna, an attorney for the Bernstein family said they were grateful for the work of local law enforcement in this past week.

Friend With Dirt Under Nails Arrested in Student's Death

It was unclear how well Woodward and Bernstein knew each other in high school, or the nature of their relationship, Barnes said.

"They are both in grieving situations", Rackauckas said. Several hundred community members held a candlelight vigil Wednesday evening to remember the college sophomore, who had been home visiting his family on winter break. His wallet, credit cards, glasses and cash were all found in his room.

According to the OC Sheriff's Department, Woodward was the last person in contact with Bernstein before he disappeared. "With his death, a attractive life has been extinguished".

"With his death, a attractive light has been extinguished and we encourage you to continue to shine his light, through acts of loving kindness", the family said in a statement read by attorney Annee Della Donna. "My thoughts are: Revenge is empty. My only hopes are that he will never have the opportunity to hurt anyone else again and that something meaningful can come from the senseless act of Blaze's murder", her statement said, in part.

The 16-page warrant filed by a sheriff's investigator and obtained by Bernstein's friend was "breathing heavy, talking fast and visibly shaking". He went back to the park less than two hours later, but Bernstein was still nowhere to be found. He waited for an hour and drove to his girlfriend's house around 1 a.m., Woodward told investigators. The friend said Bernstein complained about his grades in school and "seemed depressed but never said anything about wanting to hurt himself". The affidavit also reportedly stated that Woodward attributed the scratches and abrasions to a "fight club".

At one point, the friend opened the doors to his rental auto and allowed two detectives to look inside. Inside the vehicle, officers found camping equipment, a black belt, and a large plastic bin inside.

He agreed to be further interviews at the sheriff's headquarters in Santa Ana, where his story "stayed fairly consistent". "Now Do Good for Blaze Bernstein", Jeanne Pepper tweeted.

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