Tom Spader/USA Today

Tom Spader/USA Today

A judge ruled today that Arthur E. Morgan III will spend the rest of his life in prison, with no chance of being released on parole.

Arthur E. Morgan III was charged with throwing his 2 1/2 year old daughter off a bridge in 2011.

State law dictated that Superior Court Judge Anthony J. Mellaci impose a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole on Morgan for the murder of Tierra Morgan-Glover because the victim was a child — a factor that that would have qualified Morgan for execution before New Jersey abolished the death penalty in 2007. Speaking to Morgan, Mellaci said if New Jersey still had the death penalty, “you would be candidate No. 1.”

Morgan strapped his daughter into her pink-flowered car seat, tethered a five-pound metal car jack to the seat, threw the contraption into a stream in Shark River Park in Wall and left the crying child to die in the murky water as he drove away to a liquor store.

Before the sentence, Morgan argued he had been unfairly portrayed in the media and by the court. He winked at cameras as he walked out of court.

Source: USA Today