Oxnard woman convicted of killing newborn
A jury convicted Oxnard woman Rosalba Cruz Moran of first degree murder on the morning of Monday, Nov. 23, of her newborn child after leaving it in an agricultural field in Camarillo in May 2012 — her infant was found dead three days after its birth. The jury was sent to deliberate Moran’s fate on Friday, Nov. 20.
During the trial, prosecuting attorney Anne Spillner cast Moran as a cold-blooded monster who left her newborn to die in a strawberry field out of spite for the baby’s father, who refused to help her.
“Baby John Doe never got a name. He lived a short life of pain because his mother left him in a puddle of blood, helpless and defenseless,” in the same ditch he was born in, Spillner said.
Spillner sharply contrasted the hard facts gathered by Ventura County Sheriff’s investigators with Moran’s own testimony, calling the farmworker a manipulative liar who let the baby die out of spite.
Defense attorney Joe Lax told the jury that Moran is not a killer but a victim, a woman from Oaxaca whose “Stone Age” background left her unprepared for motherhood.
Walking the jury through Moran’s actions in light of a desperate mindset, Lax said her living situation left her unable to take care of a baby, forcing her to make a similarly desperate decision.
Moran lived in a wooden box in the backyard of her family’s Oxnard home, said Lax, adding that she worked six days a week for so little money that she was left with no time or resources to care for a child. She also testified that she feared being thrown out of her home if she brought the child there.
During the investigation, however, Moran gave conflicting versions of the event.
Moran, 23, face 25 years to life in prison, remains in jail and is on an INS hold. She will be sentenced Jan. 7.
Women’s volleyball team wins national title
The California Lutheran University women’s volleyball team, the Regals, has won the school’s first NCAA team title, defeating the No. 6 rated Wittenberg University Tigers from Ohio.
The win is a first for a CLU team to bring home an NCAA Division III title. The title match took place on Saturday, Nov. 21, at Calvin College’s Van Noord Arena in Michigan, resulting in a clean sweep of the rival team, 25-23, 25-18 and 25-16.
This was the third NCAA championship appearance for the team but the first win, avenging a 2011 loss to Wittenberg in the quarterfinals, which eventually resulted in a Wittenberg championship.
Another hat in the ring for Supervisor race
Pleasant Valley School Board President Kelly Long has announced her intention to run for Ventura County Board of Supervisors, District 3, currently held by Supervisor Kathy Long, who will forgo running for a fifth term.
Kelly Long, who has a degree in mechanical engineering from California State University, Long Beach, has been a manager in a multimillion dollar business as well as school board president and a working mother.
On her campaign website, Kelly lists addressing traffic congestion and affordable housing as top priorities if she were to claim the seat and lists herself as a fiscal conservative. Citing her education, she notes that bringing STEM careers to Ventura County is a priority.
“The biomedicals are something we need to keep here,” said the candidate. “It worries me when I hear that my friends, our friends, in the community are being laid off. It would be fabulous if we could bring technologies back into this area.”
On the agenda for whomever sits on the Board of Supervisors in the next few years is the renewal of SOAR — Save Open Spaces and Agricultural Resources — which Kelly Long says she supports.
“I think we need to make sure we contain our urban sprawl and keep the beauty of Ventura County,” she said. “We also need to make sure that it’s sustainable so that we can continue our economy. It’s going to take some strategy on how we can make the two to work hand in hand.”