NJ Grandmother Killed With Antifreeze

By Karen Araiza
|  Thursday, Aug 23, 2012  |  Updated 6:42 PM EDT
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Mary Groatman died on Thursday after being poisoned with antifreeze on Sunday, August 19. Police say Groatman died at the hands of her grandson's wife, Anna Castagna. NBC10's Doug Shimell spoke to Castagna's neighbors.

NBC10 Philadelphia - Doug Shimell

Mary Groatman died on Thursday after being poisoned with antifreeze on Sunday, August 19. Police say Groatman died at the hands of her grandson's wife, Anna Castagna. NBC10's Doug Shimell spoke to Castagna's neighbors.

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A Brooklawn, New Jersey woman is accused of poisoning her 88-year-old grandmother with antifreeze.

The victim, Mary Groatman, died on Thursday after being on life support for four days.

Anna Castagna, 43, (pictured on the right) is charged with two counts of murder and one count of aggravated assault. Castagna helped care for Groatman, who is the grandmother of her husband, Andrew Castagna. Neighbors say Groatman lived for years in an upstairs bedroom at their home, until she was recently fell and was taken to a rehabilitation center in Deptford. That is where investigators say she was given the antifreeze on Sunday, August 19.

"The accused had, in a time period leading up to this incident, researched the effects of ingesting antifreeze on a human body," Gloucester County Prosecutor Sean Dalton said.

Neighbor Christine Priole told NBC10's Doug Shimell that Castagna always took good care of Groatman.

"Whatever's going on, I just really don't think Anna would do something like that. And I stand behind her. I just can't fathom it! It's the craziest thing I've every heard."

Investigators say it was the emergency room staff at Underwood Hospital that discovered the antifreeze poisoning.

"If it wasn't for the exhaustive and important work done by the emergency room, this lady might've gotten away with murder," Prosecutor Dalton said.


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