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Stepmother accused of killing baby from Batavia

By Howard B. Owens

Andrew John Cianfrini, 21 months, was supposed to spend the weekend of Nov. 8 with his father and stepmother in Elmira. He never came home.

The infant died Nov. 10. Elmira police now say the child's stepmother, Melissa S. Englehardt, 24, put Methanol, an ingredient in anti-freeze, in a drink and served it to him.

Andrew lived with his mother, Kristen Cianfrini, in Batavia.

Englehardt has been charged with manslaughter, 1st.

The child's father is George Englehardt.

Mike Weaver

Very disturbing. I cannot comprehend the level of grief and anguish the mother must be feeling right now. To hand your child over to another adult and then have that child die at their hand. I hope Ms. Cianfrini is getting the emotional support she must be needing right now.

Mar 12, 2010, 1:29pm Permalink
Howard B. Owens

The rule against personal attacks should really also apply to the accused in crimes. Not everybody who is accused of a crime is guilty, and keep in mind, that many times these people have family who read the comments, too.

Mar 12, 2010, 3:31pm Permalink
Chris Charvella

The guidelines to prove murder are much tougher than manslaughter. The most likely reason they're going with the lesser crime is because they know they can prove it to a jury.

Mar 12, 2010, 4:38pm Permalink
Howard B. Owens

On manslaughter, I don't think they have to prove intent -- always difficult. The defendant could argue, I suppose, "I only intended to make the victim sick." On manslaughter, in my layman terms, I think the prosecution need only prove that the defendant took actions that a reasonable person would know might cause grave injury or death.

Mar 12, 2010, 5:53pm Permalink

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