Friday, July 25, 2014
SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A California appeals court has ordered a new trial for an Orange County woman who was convicted of killing her baby after giving birth in a restaurant bathroom.
City News Service says the court on Friday reversed Juana (WAH'-nuh) Valencia's conviction for second-degree murder.
The Anaheim woman was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison in 2012 at her second trial. Her first jury deadlocked.
Authorities say Valencia, who was 19 at the time, gave birth in 2009 in the restroom of a Stanton restaurant where she worked, then strangled the newborn girl and left the body.
Her attorney, Calvin Schneider, argued that Valencia accidentally killed the girl while trying to deliver the child alone.
Prosecutor Ebrahim Baytieh says he's prepared to try Valencia again.