BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Jorge Millan repeatedly assaulted his weeks-old baby — a child he admitted never wanting — breaking bones and inflicting burns while the mother looked the other way, according to prosecutors.
On Friday, Millan, found guilty of attempted murder and torture, received a life term in prison while Elizabeth Jara, his former girlfriend, got 9 years for assault and child cruelty.
Millan and Jara were arrested after she took the baby to an urgent care facility in May 2021. The child was transported to a hospital for treatment of severe injuries. He recovered.
Questioned about the boy’s condition, the defendants blamed each other.
It’s the prosecution’s theory Millan inflicted the injuries and Jara, aware of the abuse, did not intervene or alert authorities. The baby had dozens of rib fractures consistent with squeezing, as well as other broken bones.
A burn to the bottom of his foot was likely caused by a cigarette lighter, prosecutor Janae Knallay said.
In total, Millan, 23, was sentenced to seven years to life, plus an additional 15 years to be served concurrently, according to the District Attorney’s Office.
At trial his attorney, Monica Bermudez, argued the injuries were inflicted out of frustration, not an intent to kill. She asked the jury to find him guilty of child cruelty and acquit him of the attempted murder and torture charges.
Defense attorney Richard Rivera, representing the 22-year-old Jara, argued there was no evidence she injured the boy or was aware of Millan’s abuse.
The couple was also convicted of a misdemeanor child cruelty charge filed in connection with their then 1-year-old daughter, who lived with them and the baby in Millan’s father’s house. The home was filled with dog feces and infested by cockroaches.
The girl wasn’t physically abused, but her living conditions were so squalid they constituted child cruelty, Knallay said.