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Anaheim Woman, 21, Sentenced To Prison For Killing Newborn Baby

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(CBS) Mike Landa
Mike Landa is KNX Newsradio's Orange County Bureau Chief. For more...
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perez Anaheim Woman, 21, Sentenced To Prison For Killing Newborn Baby

Juana Perez Valencia was convicted of second-degree murder and child assault causing death on Sept. 28. (courtesy OC District Attorney’s Office)

SANTA ANA (CBSLA.com) — An Anaheim woman was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison on Friday for killing her baby after giving birth in an Orange County restaurant where she worked.

KNX 1070’s Mike Landa reports Juana Perez Valencia was convicted of second-degree murder and child assault causing death on Sept. 28.

Valencia, 21, delivered her full-term daughter in the restroom of Sombrero’s restaurant in Stanton, where she worked in December 2009.

Following her delivery, she strangled the infant and then put the body and the placenta in separate bags and left them by a trash bin, according to Deputy District Attorney Ebrahim Baytieh.

A veteran prosecutor, Baytieh said the case was the most gruesome – and tragic – murder case he has ever seen.

“Nobody spoke for this baby, other than us, which is sad and tragic,” Baytieh said.

Baytieh said the baby – whom they have named “Baby Precious Doe” – was in the morgue for two years before prosecutors were able to get a court order to give her a proper burial.

During the trial, defense attorneys for Valencia – who had no medical insurance and was not immediately under a physician’s care during her pregnancy – argued that she disposed of the baby near the trash because she was fearful of the shame her family would make her feel if they found out about the pregnancy.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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