Woman gets 15 years in death of baby

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Date: 2005-01-12
Author: Bill Hetherman , Staff Writer
Article Text: A Rowland Heights woman was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison Tuesday for killing her adopted daughter in 2003. Dianne Buu Lin, 38, pleaded guilty Tuesday to second-degree murder. She was sentenced by Los Angeles Superior Court Judge David Wesley.

The victim, Ellana Lin, 22 months, was adopted legally from China. She died Nov. 2, 2003, of blunt-force trauma and had injuries over her entire body, court records show. "It's a just resolution of one of the most tragic cases I've ever handled,' Deputy District Attorney Craig J. Mitchell said. "It was a horrific crime, and really, what more can I say?' The girl was struck in the groin with a massage tool known as a Chinese stick that was made of wood, metal and plastic, court records show. The child suffered removal of her nipples and had fingernail impressions on part of her body, according to court records.

Dianne Lin confessed to a sheriff's homicide detective that she regularly hit the baby and cleaned up blood from a carpet in the home, court records show. In exchange for Lin's plea, Wesley granted Mitchell's request to drop additional charges of assault on a child causing death and torture.

Had Lin gone to trial and been convicted of first-degree murder, she faced a mandatory sentence of 25 years to life in prison. Lin's lawyers, Richard Hutton and Christopher Hutton, did not return a call for comment. Lin's husband, Perry Lin, 37, is charged with being an accessory after the fact. He is due back in court today to decide whether to go to trial or also take a plea bargain, Mitchell said. He faces up to three years in prison if convicted. He and his wife emigrated from Taiwan.

During the investigation, Perry Lin told a detective that the couple took the baby to St. Jude Medical Center in Fullerton after she was hurt by falling off a bed and landing on her head, court records show. Lin was pregnant when she was arrested and gave birth to a baby girl in March 2004. Bill Hetherman can be reached at (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2236, or by e-mail at bill.hetherman@sgvn.com .

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