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Orcutt Man Charged With Toddler’s Death Appears in Santa Maria Courtroom

The case against an Orcutt man accused of badly injuring a toddler and causing her death was postponed until December after a Wednesday morning appearance in Santa Barbara County Superior Court in Santa Maria.

Sean Michael Kothe, 25, is charged with murder and assault on a child causing death after his girlfriend Jackeline Molina-Rodriguez of Oceano showed up at Marian Regional Medical Center with her 18-month-old daughter, Delilah Cassio-Molina, on June 26.

Santa Barbara County sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the hospital when medical staff determined the toddler’s injuries didn’t match the mother’s story.

Due to the severity of the injuries, the child was transported to Valley Children’s Healthcare in Madera, where doctors determined the girl was brain dead and life-saving measures were halted two days later.

Kothe, who was originally taken into custody for an outstanding warrant and narcotics-related allegations, later was charged in connection with the toddler’s death.

On Wednesday, defense attorney Steven Andrade said he and Deputy District Attorney Tiffany Dix had only recently received autopsy reports and needed additional time to review the information.

Judge Gustavo Lavayen agreed to the attorneys’ plan to return Dec. 14 when they expect to set a date for the preliminary hearing.

Kothe, who pleaded not guilty during the summer, remains in custody of the Santa Barbara County Jail after bail was set at $1 million.

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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