A member of the U.S. Navy, who is accused of fatally stabbing her fiance during an argument over his alleged infidelity, pleaded not guilty Thursday to a murder charge.
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Xochilt Tobon, 26, was ordered held on $1 million bail in the death of 24-year-old Tyler Henderson.
According to Deputy District Attorney Amy Colby, the defendant told police that she was chopping onions in the kitchen when the argument began Tuesday morning and she then retrieved a larger butcher knife and confronted the victim.
Tobon maintained that the knife accidentally hit Henderson in the chest during the confrontation, the prosecutor told Judge Francis Devaney.
However, the knife plunged five inches into the victim's chest and no chopped onions were found, the prosecutor said.
Tobon's sister, who lived with her sibling at the Chula Vista apartment, took the couple's year-old child and her own 4-year-old to a back room, Colby said.
The sister told police that Tobon and Henderson struggled, and during that struggle, he lifted his shirt to reveal that he was bleeding, according to the prosecutor.
Henderson died at a hospital about an hour later.
Deputy Public Defender Debby Kirkwood argued her client had no record and suffered from battered woman syndrome. The attorney said Tobon was the victim of prior domestic violence at the hands of Henderson and a man from a previous relationship.
Last September, a disturbance between Henderson and Tobon at the residence led to his arrest on suspicion of felony domestic violence, according to Chula Vista police Capt. Gary Wedge.
Tobon, who faces 25 years to life in prison if convicted, is due back in court on Jan. 13 for a readiness conference. A Jan. 19 preliminary hearing date was also scheduled.
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