Samuel Lincoln Woodward charged with murder of Blaze Bernstein

Prosecutors to announce charges in college student's killing

Murder charges have been filed in the case of a stabbing death of a Pennsylvania college student.

During Wednesday's press conference, Rackauckas confirmed that Woodward had been charged with one count of felony murder with a sentence enhancement for using a knife. Woodward allegedly stabbed Bernstein repeatedly and buried his body in the California park where it was later found, the District Attorney's Office said in a press release. Investigators found Woodward had abrasions, scratches and dirt on his hands, and during surveillance he was seen cleaning the vehicle, Rackauckus said.

Bernstein, who weighed 135 pounds, and Woodward, who weighs 185 pounds, both attended high school at the prestigious Orange County School of the Arts in Santa Ana. Woodward was arrested and told investigators he became angry after Bernstein kissed him the night they went to the park in Lake Forest. If found guilty Woodward could face anywhere from 26 years to life in state prison.

When Woodward was interviewed by investigators about Bernstein's disappearance, Woodward told police that Bernstein had kissed him in the auto before the trip to the park and that Woodward pushed Bernstein away.

Woodward, who was interviewed several times by investigators, said he drove Bernstein from Hobby Lobby to Borrego Park in the Foothill Ranch section of Lake Forest. We have an obligation to file charges only if there is sufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that occurred. Authorities searched for Bernstein for almost a week with assistance from drone pilots and found his body on Tuesday after recent rains partially exposed it.

Woodward was interviewed by authorities after Bernstein was reported missing by his parents on January 3.

Flores committed to Espanyol
I'm in a great city and am involved in one of the best leagues in the world. I have a contract and I am honest with the club. 'We feel happy.

Bernstein texted two female friends about a June interaction where he felt Woodward was romantically interested in him, according to the document.

Gideon Bernstein reported that his son was a pre-med student who meant to major in psychology and minor in chemistry.

Rackauckas declined to discuss a motive or further details, but said that investigators have not ruled out the possibly that the case is a hate crime. Woodward also told investigators that Bernstein walked into the park alone and then he waited for Bernstein for an hour before driving to meet with a girlfriend, the Register reported. Investigators noted that Woodward clenched his jaw and fists while recounting the kiss. However, according to the 16-page affidavit, Woodward could not remember his girlfriend's last name or where she lived.

"This is a senseless murder of a young man who possessed the combination of a high-caliber mind and the heart of a poet", said Rackauckas, adding that Bernstein should have been back in Philadelphia for his spring semester at Penn.

The Orange County Superior Court bail schedule is as follows: If someone is charged with Murder, Special Circumstances there is no bail; for Voluntary Manslaughter bail is $100,000.

The Blaze Bernstein Memorial Fund at the Jewish Community Foundation of Orange County has been established to raise money for organizations that were dear to the young man as well as charities that work to protect children from violence and that foster emotional health, such as The Orangewood Foundation.

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