Teen accused of fatally stabbing Norwalk baby is not competent for trial, judge rules

Former UT student has remained a patient at Northwest Ohio Psychiatric Hospital since May 22.
TNS Regional News
Oct 26, 2013


Five months after a former University of Toledo student allegedly stabbed his infant cousin to death, an Erie County judge Thursday found that the Sandusky man remains incompetent to stand trial.

Denzel Castile, 19, has been a patient at the Northwest Ohio Psychiatric Hospital in Toledo since May 22.

Described by his doctor as “profoundly mentally ill,” Mr. Castile has entered a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity, through his attorneys, to a charge of aggravated murder for the May 16 stabbing of 11-week-old Athena Castile. The indictment includes a death penalty specification because the victim was under 3 years old.

According to Sandusky police, an altercation occurred at a Dewey Street home that ended with Mr. Castile allegedly getting the baby, running down a hallway, and stabbing her.

At the time, police could not explain the erratic behavior of Mr. Castile, who had been a good student in high school and was in his first year at UT.

His attorney, Pete Rost, said he waived Mr. Castile’s appearance at the brief competency hearing before Erie County Common Pleas Judge Tygh Tone.

“According to the doctors who are treating him, he is unable to understand the legal proceedings and unable to assist his attorneys in preparing a defense,” Mr. Rost said. “Therefore, under the statute, he is not competent to stand trial at this time. Under the statute, the state has a one-year period to restore his competency so that the case can proceed.”

A psychiatric report admitted in the case Thursday described Mr. Castile as “profoundly mentally ill,” although his doctors believe it’s possible he can be restored to competency.

Judge Tone scheduled a further competency hearing for April 16.

Shortly after the tragedy, Katia Castile said the baby lived on Norwalk's Woodlawn Avenue with her and her fiancé, Mike Stewart, and her daughter, Jenisa Meishon Castile, the mother of Athena.

"We want people to know Athena was from Norwalk," Katia said of her granddaughter. "She had lived her whole life here. "She had never been in Sandusky but that one time," Katia said. "She lived here in Norwalk. That was the first time I let her go some place else.

"This is really a loss for Norwalk," she added.


©2013 The Blade (Toledo, Ohio)

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swiss family

oh OK good .. he is not guilty because he is insane... so now the baby comes back to life with no physical scars or mental scars either, and everyone lives happily ever after.....well we all know that there is no way to bring the baby back to life.. so I see this guy as GUILTY and yea probably insane....but the question is, should he be responsible for taking a life, especially so brutally... I say YES... and if he is actually insane.. instead if sending him to the gas chamber or electric chair, tell him he will get ice cream if he enters the chamber or lies on the table or gets in the chair... and if he really is insane, he probably won't mind then flip the switch or turn on the gasses or power, it will be over fast and it will be far more humane than they way he brutally stabbed that baby.. in my opinion... and he will never be a competent and useful member of society....


Gotta agree with Swiss on this one.


A tragedy all the way around. Just wish more people understood the complexities of mental illness. RIP Athena I'm so sorry Katia


I bet that if all charges in this case disappeared , He would be as sane as the Judge And The Doctor that made this decision

I am sorry , but it just seems strange that another guy in Erie County killed a girl and went this same way and now there is not going any Justice done . I have my doubts that there is anything wrong that a lethel injection cant take care of .It just seems to me that he must have been doing all right while away at Collage and now all of a sudden , he is insane ? Common get with it people
Collages are going to be paying close attention to the students that enroll at their collage , so I dont believe a thing the family says when they say something was different when he came home in May
I am sure that they dont want to see anopther death , and I cant blame them , They are just tring to do something t protect him , and they might have noticed something different about him , and they wereuppose too . Thats what collages do , the collages train you not only for a job , but also a way of life


Do we have this in Ohio........ criminal statutes that allow for the concept of a Defendant’s diminished mental well being to be recognized, yet not an absolution for criminal conduct.?, if and when you are deemed to be sane you go on to prison, what are Ohio's laws on insanity pleas?


It's sad that some of you think you have all the answers. You don't! It is also sad this child lost her life! R.I.P.

swiss family

trying to find any logic in this killing of a child is impossible, and I don't think that any of us can find an "answer" what we can have, though , are opinions and feelings, and that is what we are expressing...I would be very interested in what your "opinion" on this matter would be..I would also wonder if you are connected or related to this child killing criminal, because I highly doubt that you would show any kind of compassion if you were related to the murdered child


A double tap to his head by the cops would have saved the community of the trial once he took the child and started stabbing her.