Central Valley

Hearing reset for mother in Turlock newborn's death

Jessica Mae Betts, the 19-year-old Turlock woman charged with first-degree murder after her newborn girl was found in a trash bin, will be back in court March 26.

During a Thursday morning court appearance, Deputy Public Defender Sonny Sandhu asked for more time to review evidence before setting a date when the prosecution will lay out its case in a preliminary hearing.

Betts told police she delivered a baby girl in the bathroom of her boyfriend's house in Turlock on Nov. 8, wrapped the newborn in a pair of purple sweat pants and a towel, and drove to Save Mart in her boyfriend's white Chevrolet, where she cried as her baby's breathing slowed and then stopped, according to search warrant documents.

Betts told detectives she didn't know how the newborn got into the Dumpster on Lander Avenue. Betts has pleaded not guilty. She is in custody at the Public Safety Center in Modesto with bail set at $1 million.

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