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."