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Laci Peterson's family speaks out

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MODESTO, California (CNN) -- Hours after Scott Peterson pleaded innocent to two counts of murder in the deaths of his pregnant wife, Laci, and their unborn son, Laci Peterson's family and a friend spoke out. Below are excerpts of what they said about the loss of Laci and her baby, who was to be named Conner.

Sharon Rocha, Laci's mother

In my mind I keep hearing Laci say to me, 'Mom, please find me and Conner and bring us home. I'm scared, please don't leave us out here all alone. I want to come home. Please don't stop looking for us.' I feel that Laci and Connor could no longer wait to be found, so last week they came to us.

Laci and her unborn child did not deserve to die. They certainly did not deserve to be dumped in the bay and be sent to a watery grave as though their lives were meaningless. Laci meant the world to me; she was my only daughter, she was my best friend.

I can only hope that the sound of Laci's voice, begging for her life and begging for the life of her unborn child, is heard over and over again in the mind of that person every day for the rest of his life. The person responsible should be held accountable and punished for the tragedy and devastation forced upon so many of us.

Dennis Rocha, Laci's father

Now we can move forward; now justice can be done. I'd also like to thank my family and my friends and colleagues and people I don't even know. Thank you for searching and praying for my daughter and grandson. Your support has been overwhelming.

Ron Grantski, Laci's stepfather

I know all of you would like for us to say something about Scott, but we're not going to do it. We owe it to Laci to let the courts bring the facts out. I'm not going to say anything that is going to jeopardize all the hard work of so many young men and woman.

We started this nightmare with one purpose in mind: To find Laci and bring her home. While this is not the way we wanted to bring her home, it will help us to begin a long process of healing.

While we understand there are many people who would like to hear from us in the very near future, we have two very tough days ahead of us. Laci's birthday is May 4th, and we have to start thinking about funeral services.

I feel sorry for Jackie and Lee [Peterson], and their family. They don't deserve this. But Laci and our family didn't either.

Rene Tomlinson, Laci's friend

Laci brought so much to each of us. Her love of good food, fine wine, gardening, entertaining and to always have a good time in any situation. Laci not only taught us proper etiquette, but how to laugh and not just giggle, but to laugh loud and often.

Laci's most recent passion was her baby boy ... Now we will never know his face, never see his smile, and never hear his cry. We will miss the chance for our children to grow up together. We can only find comfort in knowing they will always be together. And that Laci is with her son that she loved so much.

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