A 37-year-old woman, Yesenia Sesmas, has been convicted of killing her friend to steal her baby after faking a pregnancy, People reports. Sesmas had indeed been pregnant, and continued to pretend to friends and family she was expecting—even accepting gifts at a baby shower—after suffering a miscarriage. When Sesmas claimed to have given birth, back in November 2016, she sent people a photo of a baby, but not, of course, her own baby.
Instead, the image was of the 6-day-old newborn of one of Sesmas's former co-workers, Laura Abarca, who lived in Kansas. Soon after faking the birth, Sesmas drove from her home in Dallas to Wichita, Kansas and shot Abarca in the forehead, stole the infant, and showed it off back in Dallas as her own.
On Tuesday, Sesmas was charged with first-degree murder, kidnapping, and aggravated interference with parental custody. She will be sentenced on July 13, and faces life in prison without parole for 50 years.
Sesmas’s claimed that Abarca had agreed to giver her child to Sesmas, but later changed her mind. Sesmas also claimed she only brought a gun to Abarca’s home to threaten her into giving her the baby, and “didn’t intend to kill” her, Sesmas' public defender argued. “She didn’t know that [the gun] was going to fire, and she was surprised when it did,” he said.
This wasn’t the first time Sesmas was involved in a plot to steal a child. When she shot and killed Abarca, she was out on bond and awaiting charges after being jailed for an incident that happened four months before involving the attempted kidnapping of two young girls.
In that case, Sesmas is accused of going to the home of another woman, Adrianna Portillo, under the guise of giving away old clothes and a television only to allegedly threaten Portillo with a knife and order her to bind her 3- and 10-year-old daughters with duct tape in Portillo’s basement. Portillo was 8 months pregnant at the time. Sesmas also allegedly demanded $10,000. The two got into a physical fight, and one of Portillo’s daughters was able to call the police. Portillo also claims Sesmas tried to choke her oldest daughter. Sesmas had previously told Portilla she “wanted a baby girl and that she couldn’t get pregnant,” per The Wichita Eagle.
Sesmas pleaded not guilty in that case.