Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 31 July 2014

Mother jailed over death of son

Daniel Rigby was found guilty of murdering his girlfriend's son, Rio Smedley (Greater Manchester Police/PA)

A woman who allowed the death of her two-year-old son at the hands of her murdering boyfriend has been jailed for four years.

"Infatuated" Kirsty Smedley, 24, put her desire to please Daniel Rigby ahead of son Rio, who suffered 91 injuries all over his body.

Rigby delivered a fatal blow to the youngster's stomach which split his liver in two.

Smedley knew her son received two nasty injuries to his backside and head the day before in Rigby's sole care but left her home in Bolton to get cash to buy cannabis for her boyfriend. She was convicted last month in a trial at Manchester Crown Court of allowing his death.

Rigby, 23, from Tyldesley, Wigan, was sentenced to life last month and ordered to serve a minimum of 17 years after he was found guilty of murder.

Rio was killed by Rigby on April 22 at Smedley's former home in Cheriton Drive, Breightmet. The injuries were inflicted in the space of three hours and included significant bruising to both his feet caused by stamping.

Sentencing her, Mr Justice MacKay said the jury's verdict meant they were sure she knew or ought to have known there was a significant risk of serious harm to her son.

He told Smedley: "At no stage did you do anything to protect Rio from his fate. He must have suffered greatly before his death.

"You should never have left him that night. It was quite clear that Rio was at risk. You were infatuated with Rigby at the time and I think you still are, or at least during the trial. At the top of your list was a need to please him (Rigby)."

He noted that she had shown no remorse over Rio's death and the only time she showed distress was when her 999 call to the emergency services was played in court.

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