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Murder conviction upheld

CROWN POINT - A state appeals court has upheld the murder conviction of a Crown Point man who beat his girlfriend's 3-year-old son to death.

The Appellate Division of state Supreme Court denied the appeal of Greggary L. Varmette, who is serving a 25-years-to-life prison sentence for the August 2005 killing of Stephen McKay. Varmette was babysitting the child the day he was badly beaten. He denied he inflicted the fatal injuries.

The case was prosecuted in Essex County Court by Warren County District Attorney Kate Hogan as a special prosecutor.

Varmette's lawyer, Richard Manning, argued that there was insufficient evidence to convict Varmette, that his trial lawyer, the late Livingston Hatch, who was the county public defender at the time, was ineffective and that Hogan made inappropriate comments before the jury.

The Appellate Division unanimously denied the appeal on all counts.

The 25-year-old is serving his prison sentence at Five Points Correctional Facility and is eligible for parole in December 2031.

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