Two Arrested in Presque Isle County for Involvement in Baby Death

A Presque Isle mother and her boyfriend are charged in connection to the death of her three-week-old son.

It’s an investigation Northern Michigan’s News Leader has been following since April. That’s when deputies were called to a home in Hawks for a baby struggling to breathe.

Three-week-old Ashton Richardson was taken to a hospital in Alpena, then to a hospital in Saginaw before he died a few days later.

Now, Joshua Tough is charged with murdering Ashton and child abuse.

The little boy’s mother, Kirsten Richardson, is charged with abusing him.

Tough was Richardson’s boyfriend at the time the baby died.

According to court documents, Tough initially denied any involvement in Ashton’s injuries then said he was carrying the baby when he tripped.

The medical examiner in the case determined Ashton died from blunt trauma to the head and body, which was not from a fall. The case was ruled a homicide.

9&10 News learned Tough was arrested just days before these charges came down for a domestic violence case and other crimes. Court documents also say Tough has an assaultive past and takes medication for schizophrenia.

Both will return to court next week.

9&10’s Breelynn Martin and Photojournalist Jacob Johnson spoke to the sheriff about the case.