Autumn Matacchiera has been charged with murder after shoving a child she didn’t know in front of a moving train
The New Jersey woman who threw a stranger’s 5-year-old daughter in front of an oncoming train as part of a “human sacrifice” will stand trial after pleading not guilty. N. Matacchiera, 20, was charged with first-degree attempted murder after she allegedly tossed a little girl she didn’t know on the tracks at the Burlington township light rail station.
Matacchiera pleaded not guilty to the crime during a Tuesday appearance at the Burlington County Superior Court, the Courier-Post reports.
Her attorney, Brenda Maneri, told the judge Matacchiera plans to plead not guilty by reason of insanity and will request a bench trial.
Matacchiera was arrested in January after she grabbed a woman’s child and tossed the 5-year-old child she didn’t know in front of an oncoming River LINE train in Burlington City on Jan. 27.
Burlington City police officers witnessed the incident and jumped in front of the train, signaling it to stop. The child was treated for bruises and a cut to her face.
Matacchiera who shortly after the incident said that she was trying to sacrifice the girl was declared a danger to herself but competent to stand trial.
She has since been committed to Ancora Psychiatric Hospital in Winslow Township.
A little girl was thrown in front of a train at the Burlington township light rail station.
In an interview shortly after the incident, Autumn Matacchiera said she intended to offer the child as a sacrifice to win the love of an estranged relative.
“I didn’t think it was anything bad,” said Matacchiera. “Now, I kind of regret it,” she said in a call from Ancora Psychiatric Hospital. “People tell me that sacrificing a human isn’t the same as sacrificing the animal.”
Laura Matacchiera said her daughter had been “in and out” of mental health institutions told NJ.com that although her daughter has been in and out of mental health facilities for seven years, she was “not a criminal.”
“She has mental health issues,” Laura Matacchiera told the outlet. “It’s an ongoing problem.”
A trial date has been set for Nov. 8.