MADERA — The teenage girl accused of killing her newborn daughter, found wrapped in plastic and stuffed in a bathroom cabinet, pleaded not guilty Thursday in Madera County Superior Court.
Gloria Mendoza Santos, 17, who is from a village in Oaxaca, Mexico, was accompanied by a Mixteco translator when she was arraigned on a murder charge in Madera on Thursday afternoon. She is being tried as an adult. Her bail was set at $1 million.
A preliminary hearing was scheduled for Feb. 21.
"We see a lot of horrible things and of course the death of an infant is always a horrible thing," said Madera County District Attorney Michael Keitz. "Your heart always cries out for the poor infant that is killed."
Mendoza Santos went to the hospital last Friday, where doctors discovered she was suffering from postpartum bleeding, the Sheriff's Office said. But she denied giving birth.
Deputies went to a Madera home on Chapin Street near Avenue 16, where a resident allowed them to search it. When deputies found the infant's body stuffed beneath a bathroom sink, they returned to the hospital and confronted Mendoza Santos, who admitted giving birth but insisted the child was born dead.
Autopsy results show the baby was delivered alive and was then killed, the Sheriff's Office said. The cause of death was not released.
Mendoza Santos arrived in Madera three days before giving birth, the Sheriff's Office said.
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