Angelina Fernandes was just 11 years old when she walked into a crime scene that would forever change her life.
The crime scene
Angelina recalled seeing her mother in distress, her mother’s fiancé, Andrew Wagner, on the floor, and blood everywhere.
What happened to Andrew Wagner?
Stephanie Fernandes was taken to the Worcester Police Department the night of May 7, 2014 and interviewed for almost three hours.
Andrew Wagner enters Angelina and her mother’s life
Angelina Fernandes was 6 years old when Andrew Wagner met her mother Stephanie in 2009.
A fast romance
Stephanie Fernandes and Andrew Wagner moved in together almost immediately and eventually got engaged. They were together for five years.
Stephanie Fernandes, her daughter, and Andrew Wagner would go on vacations. Angelina said she and Wagner would watch “Criminal Minds” together.
Romance turns to rage
Angelina said she would hear her mother and Andrew Wagner arguing a lot and at one time confronted her mom about it.
A daughter’s recollection
In an interview with “48 Hours,” Angelina Fernandes, 20, recalled seeing Andrew Wagner trying to headbutt her mother on several occasions.
From obsessive to dangerous
Stephanie Fernandes said Andrew Wagner would become jealous, and threatened to kill her if she did not listen to him.
On May 7, 2014, Andrew Wagner and Stephanie Fernandes got into another altercation. This time, only one of them would survive. An autopsy report would later reveal that Wagner died from a stab wound to the neck.
Charged with first-degree murder
Stephanie Fernandes would later be arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the death of her fiancé.
Murder or self-defense?
Stephanie Fernandes said the night Andrew Wagner died, he pinned her to her a couch and tried to choke her. Fernandes grabbed a knife from the kitchen and told “48 Hours” Wagner tried to headbutt her as she held the knife in her right hand. Using a pen, she demonstrated how she held the knife.
In June 2022, the murder trial of Stephanie Fernandes began. It had been delayed by procedural arguments and the COVID pandemic. While she awaited trial, Fernandes was on house arrest with a GPS monitor.
Allegations of violence
Prosecutors presented witnesses who testified that Stephanie Fernandes also had a history of violent outbursts.
Stephanie takes the stand
Stephanie Fernandes’ lawyers called her to the stand. She offered an emotional recounting of what she says happened that night.
Stephanie Fernandes faced a charge of first-degree murder. She was acquitted of the murder charge, but jurors voted to convict her of the lesser offense of voluntary manslaughter.
A family’s call for justice
Andrew Wagner’s mother, Melissa Wagner, pictured with her husband Tom and daughter Jillian Cristaldi, addressed the court at Fernandes’ sentencing. She said that Stephanie took everything from her son, and justice needed to be served
In October 2022, Stephanie Fernandes was sentenced to a term of not more than 10 years and not less than eight years in state prison.
A resilient daughter
Angelina Fernandes is now studying to become a forensic psychologist and she hopes to work with victims in court and with children.
She also looks forward to the day she’ll be able to reunite with her mom.