Healdsburg Father Accused of Drowning Daugther in Baptismal Font Breaks Down in Court, Mental State Questioned - NBC Bay Area
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Healdsburg Father Accused of Drowning Daugther in Baptismal Font Breaks Down in Court, Mental State Questioned

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    A Healdsburg father accused of drowning his 4-year-old daughter in a baptismal font as his young son watched broke down in tears Monday after a Sonoma County Superior Court judge ordered that he undergo another mental health evaluation. Pete Suratos reports. (Published Monday, Nov. 28, 2016)

    A Healdsburg father accused of drowning his 4-year-old daughter in a baptismal font as his young son watched broke down emotionally Monday after a Sonoma County Superior Court judge ordered that he undergo another mental health evaluation.

    Gerardo Mendoza Ordaz's court hearing, which was already his second in one week, has now been put on hold until Dec. 19 after the defense again raised doubts about his mental state. The 42-year-old father was found in the parking lot on Nov. 20 after the alleged drowning, police said, naked and holding his limp daughter in his arms.

    Angel Delangel, a close family friend, told NBC Bay Area that Ordaz may have been high on drugs at the time.

    "He said she had the devil inside the daughter," Delangel said. "He said the daughter is really sick and put her inside the pool at the church."

    Delangel lives across the street from St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Healdsburg, where Ordaz allegedly drowned his daughter.

    After the alleged drowning, Ordaz carried his unconscious daughter along with his son across the street into the parking lot of the police station.

    The girl died at a local hospital and a funeral service is expected to take place an undisclosed location and time Monday.

    Gerardo Mendoza Ordaz, 42, is accused of drowning his 4-year-old daughter on Nov. 20, 2016 in the baptismal font at St. John the Baptist Church in Healdsburg, Calif.
    Photo credit: NBC Bay Area

    Ordaz, who worked in the fields at a local winery, is now facing murder and felony child abuse charges.

    During his first court appearance last week, Ordaz cried and was chained to a wheelchair, a common practice for inmates who are a danger to themselves or to others.

    Meanwhile, family said the suspect's wife is pregnant, has three other children and is struggling emotionally and financially. A protective order has been put in place to keep the suspect separated from his family and the family has also set up a GoFundMe account.

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