Charges dropped against man in infant's death

2014-02-13T17:00:00Z 2014-07-13T15:49:45Z Charges dropped against man in infant's deathBy Patrick McNamara Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

Charges against a man accused of killing his girlfriend’s infant daughter were dropped this week.

William Blankenburg was accused of first-degree murder in the death of 7-month-old Meghann Elise Mitchell, whom he had taken to a hospital in November 2011. The child had suffered severe head injuries and was taken off life support several days later.

Blankenburg was charged with child abuse and first-degree murder.

His attorney, Dean Brault, argued that the infant had received the head injuries days before Blankenburg took her to the hospital and that no evidence connected his client to them.

“Everyone who had seen William knows that he is a kind soul,” Brault said.

He asked that the case be dismissed with prejudice so Blankenburg can continue his life without fear of future prosecution.

The Pima County attorney dropped the charges against Blankenburg earlier this week, citing prosecutorial discretion.

Pima County Superior Court Judge Jane Eikleberry on Thursday dismissed the case against Blankenburg without prejudice. That means the county attorney can pursue the case later.

Contact reporter Patrick McNamara at 573-4241 or pmcnamara@azstarnet.com. On Twitter @pm929.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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