Atlanta (CNN) — A North Georgia man is charged with murder after authorities say he put vodka in his 4-month-old’s baby bottle, leading to her death — an incident that his public defender says was an accident.
The infant girl died June 8, 2011, after she drank the vodka. Just over a year later, a DeKalb County grand jury indicted her father, Keith Antonine Furlow, on felony murder and second-degree cruelty to children, according to the court document filed Thursday.
“We’re at a point where we are just pursuing justice for this infant little girl,” District Attorney Robert James told HLN’s Nancy Grace on Friday.
James earlier told CNN Atlanta affiliate WSB that authorities don’t see any way the baby could have consumed the vodka, unless it was given to her by the now 20-year-old Furlow.
“Obviously, at that age, a child isn’t old enough to get up and go pick up a bottle herself. Children at four months old are fed whatever it is they consume,” the district attorney said.
“So the evidence, we believe, would show that he actually fed this baby the vodka.”
Furlow, of Stone Mountain, a community about 15 miles east of Atlanta, has not yet been formally arraigned on the charges. When that happens, he will plead not guilty, according to Corinne Mull, an attorney with the DeKalb County Public Defender’s Office representing him.
“Everything isn’t always as it seems,” Mull said Friday in defense of her court-appointed client. “Accidents happen.”
The district attorney explained Friday that Furlow is being charged with felony murder because he is accused of killing his daughter while committing child cruelty.
The latter charge states that Furlow, “with criminal negligence, caused … cruel and excessive physical pain by feeding a four month old an alcoholic beverage,” according to the indictment