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Alleged Antifreeze Killer Anne Castagna Charged with Murder, Bail Increased

Anne Castagna is accused of using antifreeze to poison her elderly in-law at a rehab facility in Deptford. The victim died Thursday.

The Brooklawn woman accused of fatally poisoning her grandmother-in-law with antifreeze now faces a murder charge. 

Anne Castagna was served with the new charge at the Gloucester County Jail after the victim, 88-year-old Mary Groatman, was taken off life support by her family Thursday afternoon. Authorities served Groatman with the charge in the presence of her attorney, Fred Last. 

In light of the more serious charge, Judge Walter L. Marshall Jr. increased Castagna's bail from $250,000 to $350,000 full cash. 

Castagna, 43, was . 

She allegedly slipped Mary Groatman, her husband’s grandmother, antifreeze in some form Sunday afternoon at the Deptford Center for Rehabilitation and Healthcare, where Groatman had been recovering after a fall, Dalton said. 

By Sunday night, Groatman was unconscious and unresponsive and was taken to Underwood-Memorial Hospital in Woodbury, where doctors discovered ethylene glycol—the toxic chemical that is the primary ingredient in antifreeze—in her system, and called police. 

During a press conference Thursday afternoon, Gloucester County Prosecutor Sean Dalton said Castagna researched the effects of ingesting antifreeze before slipping it to the elderly woman. 

He called the poisoning of Groatman “heart-wrenching” and “a sick act."

Sonia August 26, 2012 at 05:14 PM
The article fails to state why Mrs. Castagna poisoned her husband's grandmother. As someone who is reading the article, I am wondering if she did it for financial gain, anger towards her relative or just because she is just plain nuts. This is such a terrible thing to do to a senior and I just want to know what is the reason behind her actions.
Lauren Burgoon August 26, 2012 at 10:12 PM
Thanks Sonia - it's a question that authorities cannot answer yet. As the investigation progresses, we'll keep you updated.
rubber ducky August 27, 2012 at 03:20 AM
From what I understand the Grandmother lived with Castagna and her family and the defendant was her care giver, maybe she was tired of taking care of her? If that was the case tell someone else to take over jeez! I'm going to play defense attorney and also make a prediction... The Grandmother was getting old and didn't want to live like that so the granddaughter in law decided to help her commit suicide. She will be sentenced to time served plus parole for 10 years. Of anyone I feel the worst for her children at least two of them are teenagers. All parents are humiliating enough, I can't imagine how they feel.
Lauren Burgoon August 27, 2012 at 03:44 AM
In case you missed it, here's some more background on the case from prosecutors: http://patch.com/A-xmlv
Darlene Budd September 01, 2012 at 03:11 PM
Does it really matter why Castagna did it. The poor women is DEAD! I hope they throw the book at her.

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