Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Dad sentenced to 50 years for rape, torture-murder of 19-day-old daughter (Newhall, California)

Since Daddy apparently raped the baby before or after killing her, not sure why this doesn't qualify as a "special circumstance" murder eligible for the death penalty.

Dad is identified as MATTHEW BRENDAN WARNER.

UPDATE: Newhall father sentenced to 50 years to life for murder of newborn daughter

By Jim Holt
Signal Senior Staff Writer

Posted: October 6, 2015 1:53 p.m. Updated: October 6, 2015 4:03 p.m.

As expected, a Newhall man who last month pleaded no contest to first-degree murder in the death of his 19-day-old daughter was sentenced Tuesday to 50 years to life in state prison, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office said.

Matthew Brendan Warner, 30, of Newhall, appeared Tuesday in San Fernando Superior Court where he was sentenced, but not until he heard from the dead girl’s mother and grandmother, Deputy District Attorney Julie Kramer told The Signal Tuesday.

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge David Walgren heard victim impact statements from Ellorah Rose Warner’s mother and grandmother before sentencing.

“They talked about the loss Ellorah’s death has had on them,” Kramer said outside the courtroom. “It was very emotional,” she said. “The mother said she’s never going to get a chance to pick out a Halloween costume for her daughter.

“She talked about Thanksgiving and Christmas. She said she would never be able to take her to meet Santa,” Kramer said.

“The girl’s grandmother told the court that she wore a locket and that Ellorah’s hair was in the locket, and that it was only thing she would ever have of her granddaughter,” she said. “She said the loss was something she would carry with her forever.”

Warner entered a no contest plea last month to one count of first-degree murder and admitted a prior strike conviction.

He killed Ellorah Warner at their home in Newhall while the baby’s mother was at work on Jan. 23, Kramer said.

He then claimed the newborn had been kidnapped and a search was launched to find her, she said.

Warner eventually led authorities to the victim’s body, which he had hidden in the cab of a truck parked in a nearby parking lot.

After his arrest, Warner faced charges of assault of a child causing death, torture, oral copulation or sexual penetration with a child under 10 years old, and aggravated sexual assault of a child.

Those charges were dismissed as part of his negotiated settlement, DA spokesman Ricardo Santiago said last month.

Warner “was charged with first-degree murder, not a special circumstance murder,” so the death penalty was not considered in the case, Santiago said. “In California only murders with a specific set of special circumstance allegations (are) eligible for the death penalty,” he said.

Those can include murders committed during a robbery or rape, or if someone has committed multiple murders.