North Fort Myers man indicted for first-degree murder of a toddler

Writer: Derrick Shaw
Published: Updated:

A North Fort Myers man arrested in April has been indicted by a grand jury for first-degree murder, sexual battery on a child, and three counts of aggravated child abuse.

According to the original report, a toddler was taken to the hospital with severe injuries after deputies found the child unresponsive at a home on W. Mariana Avenue at 1:43 p.m. on April 29.

Deputies say they met with the child’s caregiver, Nicholas Steven Canfield, 25, who was attempting lifesaving measures on the child. The 2-year-old was immediately taken to the hospital, where she later died according to the sheriff’s office.

Canfield was arrested and initially faced charges of capital sexual battery on a victim under 12 and aggravated child abuse, but on May 18 the sheriff’s office added a second-degree murder charge. Now, the grand jury upgraded that charge to first-degree murder.

Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno said three children were living in the home and another child was also found to have been abused by Canfield.

State Attorney Amira Fox said in addition to the child who died, Canfield’s two counts of aggravated child abuse are for two other victims.

Defendant Nicholas Stephen Canfield, 25, has been indicted for:

  • Count I: First Degree Murder, F.S. 782.04 (1), Capital Felony
  • Count II: Sexual Battery, Child Less than 12 Years of Age, F.S. 794.011(2), Capital Felony
  • Counts III-V: Aggravated Child Abuse, F.S. 827.03(2), First Degree Felony

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