A Seal Beach mother of four will face trial for fatally abusing her 22-month-old daughter. She will be tried for “child assault causing death,” a charge that is considered the equivalent of murder. The penalty is the same: 25 to life if convicted.
Linda Wilborn, 31, was “held to answer” at the conclusion of her Monday, April 18 preliminary hearing, according to Farrah Emami, spokesperson for the Orange County District Attorney’s Office. The term “held to answer” means a judge decided that Wilborn stand trial.
Wilborn, who will turn 32 tomorrow, Friday, April 29, has also been charged with three counts of child abuse and endangerment.
Wilborn was scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday, April 26. An arraignment is a formal reading of the charges. She pled not guilty prior to the preliminary hearing. Wilborn is in custody in the Orange County Jail. Bail has been set at $1 million.
Millicent Wilborn, 22 months old, died on Dec. 17, 2009.
Her twin brother, whose name has not been made public, apparently suffered skull trauma that day.
According to the police log for Dec. 17, 2009, police received a call for medical aid at 3:58 p.m. for a location on Anchor Way. Linda Wilborn’s husband was at work at the time.
According to the log, the Orange County Fire Authority gave Linda Wilborn instructions to administer CPR to Millicent Wilborn at 4 p.m. Paramedics apparently arrived at about 4:03 p.m.
At that time, Millicent Wilborn had no pulse.
Millicent Wilborn died later that day of a ruptured heart, according to the DA’s Office.
Millicent’s twin brother, known only as John Doe, reportedly suffered a skull fracture. He survived. The three surviving Wilborn children were placed in protective custody.
The Seal Beach Police Department investigated. Seal Beach detectives arrested Linda Wilborn early Monday afternoon, Feb. 8, 2010 for “assault on a child with force likely to produce great bodily injury resulting in death.”
Detectives arrested Linda Wilborn while she was visiting her children at the Orange County Social Services Agency.
According to a joint press release issued on Feb. 8, 2010 by the DA’s Office and the SBPD, there is no evidence that either of the other two Wilborn children were ever physically abused.
At the time, Emami told the Sun Newspapers that the charge was essentially the same as murder, but specific to child abuse.
If convicted of fatal child abuse, Wilborn would not be eligible for parole until she had served 25 years.
The preliminary hearing concluded one year, four months and one day after her daughter died. Millicent Wilborn would have celebrated her third birthday this February.