Trial to begin for baby sitter charged in toddler's death

AP News
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Posted: Dec 05, 2016 1:29 PM

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Trial is set to begin for a West Virginia man accused by authorities of killing a 2-year-old boy he was babysitting and stuffing the body in a freezer.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports (http://bit.ly/2gYpADB) that 24-year-old Jarrel Stricklen's trial opens Monday with jury selection in Kanawha County Circuit Court. He's charged with first-degree murder in Gavin Aldridge's May 2015 death.

Stricklen first told police the child drowned in a bathtub. But investigators said they concluded the death was caused by physical assault and suffocation.

The Gazette said defense attorney Troy Giatras has called the murder charge "an overreach."

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Shortly after Stricklen's arrest, Giatras questioned why the child was left in his client's care. Giatras has said Stricklen wasn't a paid baby sitter and didn't really know the boy's mother.

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Information from: The Charleston Gazette-Mail, http://wvgazettemail.com.