Grand jury indicts father on 1st-degree murder charge

Chance Walsh and his parents, Kristen Bury and Joseph Walsh. Sarasota Co. Sheriff's Office photos

SARASOTA, Fla. (AP) — A grand jury indicted a Florida man on a first-degree murder charge in the death of his 7-week-old son.

The indictment came Tuesday, some four and a half months after the body of Chance Walsh was found in a shallow grave near Sarasota.

Authorities say Joseph Walsh beat and choked the baby on Sept. 16. The child’s mother, Kristin Bury, has pleaded no contest to aggravated manslaughter in the boy’s death and will testify against Walsh. She led authorities to the child’s body on Oct. 15 after the couple was arrested in South Carolina. An affidavit details how baby Chance suffered in the hours before he died. 

RELATED PHOTOS: North Port baby boy Chance missing

The Herald-Tribune reports prosecutors aren’t seeking the death penalty because the case doesn’t meet the statutory criteria. If convicted, Walsh faces a mandatory life sentence.

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