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Jury deadlocks in trial of woman charged with killing newborn

January 31, 2012 | 10:10 am
Photo: Juana Perez Valencia. Credit: KTLA-TV

An Orange County judge declared a mistrial in the case of a 21-year-old woman accused of strangling her newborn and dumping the baby's body in a trash bin at a restaurant.

Jurors voted 10-2 in favor of acquitting Juana Perez Valencia of Anaheim of first-degree murder and later voted 7-5 in favor of convicting her of second-degree murder, the Orange County Register reported.

A decision on whether to hold another trial for Valencia will be made within a couple of weeks.

Valencia is accused of giving birth in December 2009 to a baby girl in a restroom at Sombrero's, a Mexican restaurant in Stanton, and suffocating her before putting her in a plastic bag and dumping her body behind the restaurant, according to prosecutors.

Valencia is accused of going to a hospital for treatment and claiming she had been hurt in a fall. The hospital staff determined she had given birth and contacted authorities.


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Photo: Juana Perez Valencia. Credit: KTLA-TV