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Lawyer: Prosecutor Grandstanding In Toms River 4-Year-Old Shooting Case

The lawyer for the Toms River man whose 4-year-old son shot and killed a 6-year-old playmate last month accuses the prosecutor in the case of grandstanding.

Attorney Robert Ebberup addresses the media
Anthony Senatore’s attorney Robert Ebberup addresses the media. (Jason Allentoff, Townsquare Media NJ)

Toms River attorney  Robert Ebberup read a prepared statement outside his office this morning, saying there’s not a day that goes by that his client 33-year-old Anthony Senatore doesn’t feel pain and sorrow for what happened in April.

“While we did not know him in life, we have come to learn how amazing little Brandon Holt was,” read Ebberup.


Creating A Spectacle

In the statement, Ebberup accuses the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office of grandstanding, which he feels could prevent Senatore from having a fair trial.

Ebberup says the Prosecutor’s office created a “spectacle” in arresting Senatore at his Bayville home in front of his wife and children without warning as they ate dinner after Senatore fully cooperated with the investigation. Ebberup says his client would have surrendered at the location of the Prosecutor’s choice.

Senatore has waived his initial appearance in Toms River municipal court scheduled for Thursday Atlantic County. although Ebberup will still meet with a judge. Senatore was taken into custody Monday evening from a Bayville residence and posted $1e00,000 bail and was released from the Ocean County Jail.

Senatore is being charged with five counts of second-degree endangering the welfare of children and one count of third degree endangering the welfare of a child.

Senatore has also been charged with a disorderly person’s offense for enabling access by minors to a loaded firearm.

A Family Grieves

Green ribbon tied around a tree outside St. Joseph's Church in Toms River
Green ribbon tied around a tree outside St. Joseph’s Church in Toms River (Dan Alexander, Townsquare Media NJ)

The father of Brandon Holt, 6-year-old boy shot by Senatore’s son, talked to the media for the first time in the driveway of his home about the charges. “I’m glad he has charges against him,” Ronald Holt said according to the Star Ledger. “I know it’s not going to bring my son back.  It’s a relief that, you know, that something’s being done about it.”

Ronald and his wife are still dealing with the loss of Brandon. “I think about him everyday,” Holt said. “You know, I always picture when he was laying there — when he was laying in the golf cart, shot.” He tries to remember the good times they shared but then  “I get upset, and I get like a sick feeling in my stomach, because I knew he a lot to live for.”

On Monday, April 8, Senatore’s 4-year-old son gained access to an unsecured .22 caliber rifle in Senatore’s bedroom, took the gun outside of and fired a single shot, which struck 6-year-old neighbor, Brandon Holt, in the head. Holt was transported to the Jersey Shore University Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead the next day.

FULL COVERAGE: 4-Year-Old Shoots 6-Year-Old In Toms River

Rosetta Key contributed to this report

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