Trial slated for dad charged in bathtub death

JUSTIN DOUGLAS SMUTZ mug shot 060116_218741

MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — The case against a Muskegon man charged with murdering his infant daughter is heading to trial.

Justin Smutz waived his probable cause hearing Friday, sending the case to circuit court.

Smutz, 32, is charged with open murder and second-degree child abuse in the death of 1-year-old Adalynn Smutz.

Police say Adalynn died May 25 inside a Spring Street home after being left alone with her 2-year-old brother in a bathtub filled with water. Investigators said Smutz told them he placed the children in about 10 inches of water before going outside for a cigarette, the Associated Press reported.

Police say Smutz told them he returned and tried to help Adalynn and called 911. Paramedics’ tried to revive the infant, but she died.

The day before Adalynn’s death, Smutz’s son was found wandering the streets. Police say it took 45 minutes to find his dad. Neighbors say it was the second time that day a child got out of the house unsupervised.

Children’s Protective Services had received complaints that Adalynn was being neglected. The Office of Children’s Ombudsman, a watchdog that monitors CPS, is investigating how CPS handled those complaints and caseworkers’ actions prior to the death.

Smutz is also charged as a second-time habitual offender, which could lead to a longer prison sentence if he’s convicted.

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