By Daniel Kelley
(Reuters) - A New Jersey man was found guilty of first-degree murder on Thursday for tossing his toddler daughter, strapped in her car seat weighted down by a tire jack, into a frigid creek, prosecutors said.
Arthur Morgan III, 29, faces life in prison without parole for the murder committed during a court-approved visit with 2-year-old Tierra Morgan-Glover in November 2011.
Morgan killed Tierra to exact revenge on her mother, his estranged girlfriend who had custody of the girl, according to the Monmouth County District Attorney's Office.
Two days after Morgan failed to bring the girl back to her mother, the child's body was found submerged in a stream by a group of teenagers playing in Shark River Park, about 35 miles west of Trenton, New Jersey.
The prosecutor said the girl was alive when the car seat hit the water.
The gruesome discovery of her body sparked a nationwide manhunt and about a week later Morgan was arrested in San Diego by a federal task force.
His sentencing was set for May 28. His public defender attorney did not return calls seeking comment.
(Editing by Barbara Goldberg, Ellen Wulfhorst and Gunna Dickson)