15-year-old murder suspect's parents describe jail visit

Anderson parents
Anderson parents
Nate Anderson
Nate Anderson

By Layron Livingston - bio | email

SMITH COUNTY, TEXAS (KLTV) - Mark and Stacie Anderson spoke with us just moments after visiting their son, Saturday afternoon. They said their faith has helped their entire family deal with his arrest.

"As soon as I see him in that orange jump suit, my heart just breaks," said Mark Anderson. "He puts his hand on that glass and gives us a smile, and says, 'it's okay Dad, it's okay.'"

"God has made promises to us, so we have to stand on them," said Stacie Anderson.

Mark says his son has been reading his Bible often. "When we go see him, [Nathan] strengthens us," he said.

Saturday's visit was the couple's second trip to the Smith County Juvenile Attention Center. They're only allowed 30-minutes each trip.

"I told [Nate] today, I hope you don't grow up too much that you're not going to hug your mom when you go out," Stacie said.  "He said, 'oh no, don't worry about that.'"

The Anderson's said the first visit was hard for Nate. "He was nervous, scared, overwhelmed," Mark described.

Stacie said her son isn't the most emotional, but says he held back tears the night after the arrest, constantly wiping his eyes.

"[Saturday], there just seemed to be a strength about him," said Stacie.

We're told Nate is the youngest inside the center. His parents brought cards--notes of encouragement from friends and family members--but because of Attention Center policy, they were not allowed to give the notes to Nate. They will have to mail them, instead.

The Anderson's also tell us they have not slept in their Chapel Hill home since the murder. Their 19-year-old daughter was found dead in her bedroom.

"All her memories, everything that we wanted to touch and hold, [investigators] took all that," said Mark.

The Anderson's said they hope to return someday. Meanwhile, they maintain their son's innocence.

"[I'm] not a father who's just in denial," said Mark. "He did not kill his sister, and that will come out. He will be vindicated."

Nate Anderson is expected to be in court just days before Thanksgiving for his second detention hearing.

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