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Neglect of a dependent could net man 8 years


In the past 18 years, Chad Traster has picked up misdemeanors and felonies for battery, domestic battery and failure to pay child support.

On Friday, Steuben County prosecutors charged Traster, 37, with neglect of a dependent, a felony punishable by up to eight years in prison.

Traster is in the Steuben County Jail on an unrelated charge.

The case stems from a yearlong investigation into the suspicious death of a 3-year-old child, according to the Steuben County Sheriff’s Department.

What began initially as a child abuse investigation turned into a death investigation when the baby died, though the cause of the baby’s death was later determined to be unrelated to the original injuries reported to police, the sheriff’s department said.

Traster, from Angola, is being held without bail until he can have his initial hearing on the charges.

The case was investigated by the Steuben County Sheriff’s Department, the Indiana Department of Child’s Services, the Steuben County Coroner’s office, the Marion County Coroner’s office and the Indiana State Police.