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CNN BREAKING NEWS

Carlie Brucia Case

Aired February 6, 2004 - 09:04   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

BILL HEMMER, CNN ANCHOR: Back to Florida right now, the latest in the tragic case of 11-year-old Carlie Brucia. The news we all woke up to earlier today. Susan Candiotti back live in Sarasota there.
Good morning, Susan.

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Bill.

Investigators are now carefully dissecting what is now a crime scene, and our CNN producer who was at the site reports it appears the body of 11-year...

HEMMER: We apologize about that. We seem to have a technical problem with Susan Candiotti. We're going to hang with it just a moment to see if we get Susan back here. If not, we will move on to Mark Klaas, our guest who was joining us last hour.

These are the facts as we understand them right now: 11-year-old Carlie Brucia, missing since Sunday evening in that surveillance videotape that literally the entire country has watched and witnessed. Her body was discovered early Friday morning behind a church in the Sarasota area right off interstate 75. Joseph Peter Smith, age 37, is now under arrest and charged with this crime.

Back to Susan now, with the problems fixed there.

Susan, sorry to interrupt. Apologize about that. You can continue.

HEMMER: Yes, Bill. We were saying that at this hour investigators are now carefully dissecting what is now a crime scene. We do have a CNN producer at the area, and she reports to us, it appears the body of 11-year-old Carlie Brucia has not yet been removed from the area. Her remains were discovered there overnight. We do not know at this time what led investigators to that area. Her remains were discovered behind a church, again, in this general area in Sarasota, in an area near I-75.

Now, the parents of Carlie, her mother, her father and her stepfather, were notified hours ago by the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office. And all morning long, they have been receiving well-wishers trying to offer them comfort. You will recall that Carlie disappeared on Sunday night. We saw her time and again on that surveillance camera video, her abduction apparently captured on that tape. Her parents naturally had hoped that she would be recovered safely. Sadly, that has not happened.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just want to thank all the people behind me and all the people that were behind them in the -- in their efforts to find my daughter, and the community that was so involved. And for the part that you people, the media, played. Just want to thank everybody for all they've done.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Carlie will always be my baby, you know?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CANDIOTTI: A lot of sadness being expressed by everyone who knew that 11-year-old sixth grader, Carlie Brucia.

Under arrest, as you indicated, Joseph Smith. He has been the prime suspect throughout, as identified by the police. He is being charged in her abduction and murder. We do know prior to this he had not been cooperating with authorities. We don't know if that had changed in the overnight hours. And we are not sure as yet when he will make his first scheduled appearance to appear to respond to these charges -- Bill.

HEMMER: Susan, thanks. Susan Candiotti in Sarasota.

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