A former University of Toledo student charged in the death of his infant cousin is competent to stand trial, an Erie County Common Pleas Court judge ruled Wednesday.
Denzel Castile, 20, of Sandusky has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to a charge of aggravated murder for the May 16 stabbing of 11-week-old Athena Castile of Norwalk. The charge carries a death penalty specification because of the victim’s age.
Defense attorney Pete Rost said Mr. Castile, who has been a patient in the Northwest Ohio Psychiatric Hospital in Toledo since the incident, is to be evaluated to see if he had a mental illness that qualifies him for an insanity defense.
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.
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.
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