Linda Ann Wilborn, the Army wife convicted last month of killing her 23-month-old daughter and bashing in the head of the toddler's twin brother, was sentenced today to 25 years to life in state prison.
The Seal Beach 34-year-old reportedly dabbed her eyes with tissue upon learning her fate.
Wilborn, who had caught the attention of Social Services in 2008 for leaving her then-four-month-old daughter Millicent and the twin boy alone in a car, called 9-1-1 the afternoon of Dec. 17, 2009, to report the girl was not breathing. Several incorrect addresses were given to the dispatcher, who eventually figured out to send responders to base housing at the Seal Beach Naval Weapons Station. They lived there with the mother's husband and the babies' father, Derrick Wilborn, a sergeant first class stationed at the Los Angeles Medical Recruiting Command in Long Beach.
Seal Beach Police arrived to find little Millicent lying without a pulse on the floor of a back bedroom. She had bruising on her chest that her mother blamed on roughhousing. The girl later died at a hospital, and the coroner found she died from blunt force trauma to the thorax. Her heart had also been ruptured.
(For more on the parents' strange behavior before and after their daughter's death, check out Linda Ann Wilborn and Her Husband Talk to God, Dream of Pro Golf While Cops Sort Out Death of Daughter, Abuse of Siblings.)
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After an initial mistrial, prosecutors convinced a jury Linda Wilborn essentially squeezed the life out of Millicent. The mother was convicted in July of second-degree murder, assault on a child causing death and two child-abuse counts. By then, her three surviving children had been taken into protective custody, including the dead girl's twin brother, who'd suffered a skull fracture from her mom's abuse from at least Oct. 17-,Dec. 17, 2009.
Derrick Wilborn was court martialed and convicted by a panel of officers at Fort Irwin on counts of negligent homicide, child endangerment by culpable negligence resulting in bodily harm and child endangerment by culpable negligence resulting in grievous bodily harm. He was sentenced to 90 days of detainment after a military hearing where he blamed his unstable wife for his daughter's death on his wife.
Linda Wilborn's tears at sentencing were reported today by the Orange County Register.