Stepfather of man killed while camping at Malibu Creek State Park with his children speaks out

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Terry Krosschell will never forget the day he learned his stepson Tristan Beaudette was killed.

Beaudette was murdered at Malibu Creek State Park while he was camping with his two children.

His children's chairs were next to a fire pit, and sandals were still outside the tent.

Beaudette was shot and killed next to his daughters.

"They understand daddy didn't wake up, and there was a lot of blood when they woke up with a loud noise," Krosschell said.

For Krosschell, it's hard for him to move beyond it because a suspect hasn't been named.

"You have no idea who it was, you have no idea what happened, and there's just way too many questions," Krosschell said.

Last Wednesday, an arrest was made, but not specifically for Beaudette's murder.

Anthony Rauda, a transient turned survivalist, was arrested for multiple burglaries in the same area.

Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputies found him hidden in thick brush at Malibu Creek State Park armed with a rifle.

At a press conference last week, Sheriff Jim McDonnell wasn't ready to call him a murder suspect.

"We're not going to say that "Yes, he is or that no, he's not." We don't have that information yet," McDonnell said. "They'll be a lot of work done. We have a weapon in custody."

The investigation seemed to be intensifying this week.

Sheriff's deputies were back at the state park searching for more evidence.

There are no answers yet for Beaudette's family.

"It's my son," Krosschell said. "I want to know, and not being able to get the information is very, very difficult."

Rauda's family tells Eyewitness News he had a history of mental illness, and retreated to the Malibu Hills because he couldn't deal with people.

During the burglaries he's accused of committing, he only stole food.

If Rauda is connected in some way, Krosschell said it wouldn't ease the pain, but it would help them understand.

"It doesn't change the fact that he's still dead," Krosschell said. "It doesn't change the fact that we're still grieving over him. It gives a better idea of what might have happened."

Rauda was in court Friday. His case was continued until November.

Beaudette's friends from high school are creating a scholarship fund in his name.
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