REDDING, Calif. - The aunt of an Anderson Marine is speaking out about allegations that he attacked his pregnant ex-girlfriend so she would lose her baby.
Lance Swann, 20, made his first court appearance Thursday afternoon in a Shasta County courtroom. Several family members were crying as they watched the arraignment. Swann also appeared to be on the verge of tears.
Redding Police say Swann, his cousin Erica Swann and fellow Marine, Jeffrey Walton kicked, punched and choked the then-pregnant Nicole Vultaggio, 18, near the Sacramento River Trail in June.
Lance Swann's aunt, Janine Swann, told KRCR Newschannel 7 she considers Lance to be one of her children. She raised Lance since the age of 11 after the death of his mother. Janine's daughter Erica Swann is also charged in the attack.
Janine said Lance has always been shy and quiet. She hadn't seen Lance for about a year because he was deployed in Afghanistan. She had no idea about Vultaggio or the baby, and was shocked to find out her kids had anything to do with the attack.
"I still see that little kid I raised in there. It's just amazing," said Janine Swann. "We just can't believe it. It's hard to believe, even for Lance. He's a good kid."
Janine Swann said neither Erica or Lance Swann have ever been involved in any crime. She told us this is the most devastating thing that has ever happened to her family and that she can only imagine how the Vultaggios feel.
All three suspects are being charged with attempted murder, conspiracy and robbery. They are scheduled to be back in court August 1st.