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Prosecutor upgrades charges for Virginia Tech student in girl's death

By Shawn Price   |   Feb. 3, 2016 at 12:06 AM

BLACKSBURG, Va., Feb. 2 (UPI) -- A prosecutor said Tuesday a 13-year-old Virginia girl was stabbed to death, and charges were upgraded for one of two Virginia Tech students arrested in her abduction and slaying.

Nicole Lovell was likely killed on Jan. 27, the day she went missing, Mary Pettitt, a prosecutor for Montgomery County, said at a news conference.

Nicole's body was found about 90 miles from her home in Blacksburg, Va., near the North Carolina state line. The preliminary investigation found stabbing to be cause of her death.

Police received about 400 tips from the public before arresting David Eisenhauer, 18, and Natalie Keepers, 19, both Virginia Tech engineering students. Eisenhauer was charged with first-degree murder, and Keepers was charged with felony improper disposal of a dead body, misdemeanor accessory after the fact. On Tuesday, prosecutors added felony accessory before the fact to first-degree murder as a third charge, Pettitt said.

Both students were being held without bond.

Tammy Weeks, Nicole's mother, said at the news conference that police told her Nicole met Eisenhauer online.

Weeks told how her daughter, had beaten the odds during her short life, surviving a liver transplant and non-Hodgkins lymphoma that put her in a coma for six months after developing acute respiratory distress syndrome. Nicole was also being bullied at school.

Weeks, in an emotional statement, said her daughter's nickname was "Coley," and that she had "a passion for pandas, music, dancing, dreamed of being on American Idol someday," Weeks said.

"Nicole was a very lovable person. Nicole touched many people throughout her short life," Weeks said.

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