Baby fatal case headed to higher court

Becky Vargo • Jul 21, 2015 at 12:28 PM

Anthony Casanova, 40, was taken back to jail following a preliminary examination Wednesday in 60th District Court. Judge Maria Ladas Hoopes ruled there was enough evidence to send the case up to the higher court as charged.

Police said Casanova shook the baby on more than one occasion before the child died in the family's Norton Shores home on Jan. 4.

Casanova told police at the time he tripped over the dog and fell on the baby.

During the preliminary examination, Norton Shores Police Det. Anthony Nanna said Casanova changed his story in a police interview.

"He eventually admitted he just lost it with the baby," Nanna said.

Casanova told the detective in the interview that he picked up the child from his portable play pen and hugged him until he stopped breathing, Nanna said.

Then "he repeatedly threw him down on the bed," Nanna said, demonstrating an up and down motion with his arms.

The detective testified that the bed was an inflatable mattress and was very firm. It was made more firm if you sat on it, as Casanova told him he did.

Nanna testified that he also attended the autopsy where the doctor showed him previous and current broken ribs on the child, a lacerated liver, skull fracture and bleeding on the brain.

Once Casanova was bound over to Circuit Court, he signed a waiver of his Circuit Court arraignment.

Muskegon County Prosecutor D.J. Hilson said the next court hearing will be a pre-trial conference, probably in a couple of weeks, once a judge is selected.

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