YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: A Superior Court judge today allowed a former Fort Lee man charged with causing the death of his 10-week-old son last year to return to his Boca Raton, Fla., home pending grand jury action on aggravated manslaughter charges.
Michael Marrara Jr., 32, wore a light gray, pinstriped suit and gold tie to the Hackensack court appearance.
He said nothing while a team of defense lawyers and an assistant prosecutor discussed conditions with the judge of his $250,000 bail on charges of aggravated manslaughter, child endangerment and lying to police.
Family members at the time said that little Andrew Jeremy Marrara died of SIDS on March 26, 2012.
However, as CLIFFVIEW PILOT exclusively reported on Tuesday, detectives from the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office arrested Marrara and charged him with first-degree aggravated manslaughter, child endangerment and hindering apprehension.
“We believed that he was involved in the child’s death — it just took a little time for our work to be completed with the Medical Examiner’s Office,” Molinelli told CLIFFVIEW PILOT Tuesday afternoon before issuing a news release yesterday.
Fort Lee police responded to Marrara’s Center Avenue apartment at 7:45 a.m. March 26 on a 911 call of an infant not breathing and found the child, Marrara and his fiance, Lindsey Whitman, Molinelli said.
Officers and EMS personnel “tried in vain to save the child,” who was pronounced dead at 8:50 a.m. in the emergency room of Englewood Hospital, the prosecutor said.
Molinelli said his Homicide Squad reviewed the case, “as they are responsible for investigating all infant deaths that occur in the county.”
An autopsy also was conducted the following day by the Bergen County Medical Examiner’s Office, he said.
“The death remained under investigation pending numerous further tests being conducted by the medical examiner and other experts to ensure the child had no underlying medical or physiological abnormalities that could have contributed to the death,” the prosecutor said.
“Ultimately the medical examiner concluded the cause of death was closed head injury and the manner of death was classified as a homicide.”
Molinelli said Marrara, while alone with the boy, “caused the injuries that led to the infant’s death.”
“It is additionally alleged that Marrara caused previous injuries to the child in the weeks prior. Those injuries included three broken ribs and various soft tissue injuries,” he said.
Marrara, a maintenance worker for the Festival Flea Market in Pompano Beach, Fla., was accompanied by his lawyer as he surrendered to detectives at the prosecutor’s office on Tuesday. He posted $250,000 bail was released from the Bergen County Jail pending today’s brief hearing.
YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: Bergen authorities have charged a former Fort Lee volunteer firefighter in the death of his 10-week-old son, who originally was believed to have died of SIDS last year, CLIFFVIEW PILOT has learned. READ MORE….
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