Philadelphia man charged with murder of 2-year-old in Reading

U.S. Marshals announced the arrest of 25-year-old Charles Acosta, who has been accused of murder of a 2-year-old child that occurred in May of 2023 in Reading. Acosta was apprehended Thursday morning in the 7100 block of Torresdale Ave in Philadelphia.

During the early morning hours on Friday, May 5, 2023, a two-year-old male arrived at the St. Joseph’s Hospital, Bern Township, with life-threatening injuries. The child was later flown to the Penn State Hershey Medical Center for more advanced critical care. On the evening of May 5, 2023, the child was pronounced deceased by doctors at the Penn State Hershey Medical Center.

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An investigation was initiated by the Berks County Detectives and on May 9, 2023, an autopsy was conducted on the victim in Dauphin County. The autopsy revealed that the victim suffered severe internal injuries, as well as head trauma. The cause of death was determined to be “multiple traumatic injuries” and the preliminary manner of death was determined to be homicide.

According to the Berks County District Attorney’s Office, the criminal investigation revealed that prior to the victim displaying signs of medical distress, he was under the sole care and supervision of the defendant. At the time of the incident, the defendant was the paramour of the victim’s mother and was watching the victim and his siblings.

During the late evening hours of Thursday, May 4, 2023, the defendant called the child’s mother and expressed concern over the child’s medical condition. He requested that she return home. Upon returning to a residence in the 600 block of Schuylkill Avenue, the child was observed to be in extreme medical distress. He was then immediately transported to the St. Joseph’s Hospital Emergency Room by the defendant and the victim’s mother.

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On Wednesday, July 5, 2023, the defendant was charged with Murder of the First Degree, Murder of the Third Degree, Aggravated Assault (multiple counts), and Endangering Welfare of Children. A warrant of arrest was issued for Acosta by Magisterial District Judge Alvin B. Robinson, Reading, PA.

On Thursday, July 6th the defendant was taken into custody by members of the US Marshals Fugitive Task Force, Berks County Detectives, and Philadelphia Police in Philadelphia, where he currently resides. The defendant was returned to Berks County where he will be arraigned.

A Criminal Complaint is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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