Contact Us
Make My Homepage

Father Convicted in 2-Year-Old’s Drowning Death

A man who tossed his 2-year-old daughter into a creek while she was still strapped into her car seat was convicted Thursday of knowing or purposeful murder and could spend the rest of his life behind bars.

Jurors in the Freehold courtroom found Arthur Morgan III guilty of killing Tierra Morgan-Glover, whose body was pulled from a creek in a park near the Jersey shore in November 2011. They also found him guilty of child endangerment and interference with custody.

Arthur Morgan III, Tierra Morgan
Arthur Morgan III, Tierra Morgan (Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office)

Prosecutors had said he killed Tierra to get back at her mother for breaking off their engagement. They said he weighed down her pink car seat with a tire jack. Her body was pulled from a creek in a park in Wall Township, about 20 miles from her Lakehurst home, with one tiny black and purple sneaker sticking out of the water.

Morgan, 29, of Eatontown, could be ordered to spend the rest of his life behind bars when he is sentenced May 28.

Defense lawyers had asked the jury to convict Morgan of reckless manslaughter, which could have seen him freed in as little as five years.

Morgan’s state of mind the day of his daughter’s death was a key part of the case. In his opening statement, defense attorney Ryan Moriarty indicated Morgan would not deny responsibility for Tierra’s death but told jurors their task was to decide “what form of homicide applies to this defendant.”

After the child’s death, Morgan fled to California and was arrested several days later in San Diego, with a newspaper account of the killing in his pocket.

The Monmouth County medical examiner said the toddler died from “homicidal violence, including submersion in water.” He said the girl may have been conscious for three minutes after starting to breathe in water and could have remained alive for nearly five minutes after that.

Defense lawyer Jeffrey Coghlan told the jury in his closing argument Tuesday that Morgan believed Tierra’s mother’s family wasn’t raising her properly and that Morgan wasn’t thinking clearly at the time Tierra died.

On Wednesday, jurors asked the judge for a second glimpse of Morgan’s video statement to police in San Diego. In the video, a detective asked Morgan if he said anything to his daughter before leaving her to die in the creek.

“I told her I loved her, and I gave her a kiss,” Morgan replied.

“Did you say a prayer for her?” the detective asked.

“Every day,” Morgan answered.

Morgan insisted his daughter was not dead when he left the area.

“I still heard some noises,” he said. “I heard her. She sounded like she was crying.”

He said he drove away and never returned.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Best of the Web


Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your points and personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account with your Facebook account, just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing profile and VIP program points. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to http://nj1015.com using your Facebook account.

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

Register on New Jersey 101.5 quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!

Not a Member? Sign Up Here

Register on New Jersey 101.5 quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!