FREEHOLD, N.J.—A man accused of tossing his 2-year-old daughter into a creek while she was still strapped in her car seat was indicted Monday on a murder charge.
Arthur Morgan III of Eatontown has been in jail on $10 million bail since his arrest in San Diego in November.
Tierra Morgan-Glover’s body was found partially submerged in a park creek on Nov. 22. Prosecutors say Morgan had asked the girl’s mother if he could take Tierra to see a movie about dancing penguins. When he didn’t return her after a few hours, the mother called police.
In addition to the murder charge, Morgan is charged with interference with custody and child endangerment.
According to prosecutors, Morgan tossed the car seat, with his daughter strapped snugly inside its protective belts, from an overpass into the chilly water of the creek. To ensure that it sank, he had attached a car jack, the heavy metal contraption used to raise a car’s chassis to change a flat tire.
Her cause of death was listed as “homicidal violence, including submersion in water.” An autopsy determined that the child was alive when she hit the water.
Morgan’s public defender declined to comment Monday.
Should Morgan be convicted, prosecutors say they will seek to have him imprisoned for the rest of his life without parole—the harshest punishment available in New Jersey since state officials instituted a moratorium on new death penalty cases several years ago.
An arraignment date in Superior Court hasn’t yet been scheduled.