The case against an 18-year-old woman accused of killing her newborn baby after giving birth at the Platte River Campground will move forward.
The Benzie County Medical Examiner and the doctor who performed the autopsy on the baby were in court on Thursday to testify that the baby died of blunt force trauma to the head and the abdomen.
"Multiple blunt force injuries to the head and abdomen, perimortem, or around the time of death, abrasion to the left neck with a pharynx bleed. She demonstrated apparently some pharyngeal hemorrhage," said Benzie Medical Examiner, Dr. Matthew Houghton.
But Morales' attorney, Jesse Williams, had previously said the child was alive when emergency responders arrived at the campground and that there was no sense of urgency while transporting Morales and her baby to Munson Medical Center. The defense attorney also stated that previous doctor reports have indicated that the injuries could have been an accident.
The case has now been bound over to circuit court on the open murder charges. The arraignment in the circuit court will likely take place in the coming weeks. Morales is currently being held in the Benzie County Jail. She was denied bond.
Morales, of Cicero, Illinois, was arrested after giving birth at the Benzie County campsite in July. Investigators said Morales had been hiding her pregnancy from her parents and gave birth alone and in a tent while vacationing with relatives at the campground in Honor.
But Williams says that some family members did know that she was pregnant.
"Her family, particularly her mother, knew that she was pregnant," said Williams.
Emergency crews were called to the campground by relatives and took the child to Munson Medical Center where she was pronounced dead.