Death penalty not sought for accused Abilene newborn killers

ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) - State prosecutors are not seeking the death penalty for two suspects accused of killing an Abilene newborn just moments after birth in January of 2016

Online court records show the State filed motions Friday morning to not seek the death penalty against Amber Craker, 19, and Damian Cate, 24. 

Both Craker and Cate are behind bars in the Taylor County Jail for Capital Murder and Tampering with Evidence - Human Corpse. Craker is also charged with Injury to a Child. Craker is being held on bonds totaling over $500,000, and Cate's bond has been set at $150,000. 

Craker has a preliminary trial date set for September 25, 2017. A trial date for Cate has not been scheduled. 

Craker and Cate were initially arrested within one day after the body of a newborn baby was found in a trash can inside a home on the 400 block of S. 25th Street on January 18, 2016. An autopsy report reveals she was killed by "multiple sharp force injuries".

Additional documents say, "Damian Cate confessed to Abilene Police Officers. . . that he held the baby while Amber Craker cut the baby's throat. Cate then assisted in putting the baby in the trash can and cleaning up lots of blood."

An arrest report reveals the Craker admitted to police that she caused 'obvious injury' to the baby before placing it in the trash can, and Cate's arrest report says he told police he held the baby while Craker caused the 'obvious injury'.

The newborn, named Baby Ashley by Abilene Police Officers who donated her headstone and funeral, was laid to rest days after her death in a cemetery near North 10th and Cottonwood Street during a private ceremony Wednesday afternoon.

Craker spent some time at a psychiatric facility after she was deemed incompetent to stand trial, but she has since been transferred back to the Taylor County Jail where she is awaiting her day in court while in jail on bonds totaling $300,000.

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