Sentence upheld in 2-year-old’s death

(WLFI Photo, file)
(WLFI Photo, file)

CROWN POINT, Ind. (AP) — The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld the 40-year prison sentence for a northwestern Indiana man convicted of neglect after the beating death of a 2-year-old girl he was babysitting.

The (Munster) Times reports the unanimous ruling Monday rejected the appeal of 28-year-old Timothy Tkachik. He claimed the trial judge failed to consider mitigating factors including his heroin use and the dominant role of Engelica Castillo in their relationship.

Tkachik pleaded guilty in 2010 to two neglect counts for joining Castillo in beating Jada Justice to death on June 13, 2009, burning and encasing the child’s body in concrete, and dumping it in a swamp near LaPorte.

Prosecutors dropped a murder charge against Tkachik for his testimony against the 23-year-old Castillo. She’s serving a 65-year sentence for murder.

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