An evil godmother who let her partner murder her goddaughter has been jailed.
Sharleen Hughes allowed her then-boyfriend Michael Wild to beat 22-month-old Ella-Rose Clover to death at their home in Manchester.
Yesterday, the mum-of-two, who even encouraged her own 12-year-old son to lie to police, was jailed for five years at Liverpool Crown Court.
The judge said Hughes should have been aware of the risk her then-partner posed to little Ella-Rose, the Manchester Evening News reports.
Hughes, 36, was the cousin and close friend of Ella's mother, Pagan Clover, and was paid to look after the little girl while the young mum went to work.
Yet while Pagan was out earning a living, Hughes had stood aside as Wild battered the girl.
After Ella's death on January 21 last year, Hughes falsely claimed she had been at her home in Wythenshawe, Manchester, all day with Wild.
The truth was that Hughes had been out for two hours to run errands and collect her son from the Trafford Centre, leaving Ella alone with Wild.
When Hughes came back that afternoon Ella was dying on the couch.
Hughes dialled 999 and tried to resuscitate her until paramedics arrived. Ella later died in Wythenshawe Hospital.
Still, Hughes encouraged Wild and even her own 12-year-old son and his friend to lie to the police, and say that she'd been in all afternoon.
The judge, Mr Justice King QC, said that she had done this “to protect and cover up for Michael Wild although you also had the motivation of diverting the attention of police from your own role in what had happened through leaving Ella at the house alone with Michael Wild.”
Her son’s friend, however, did not go along with the lies and told police the truth.
Meanwhile officers had spent time and resources tracking her movements.
When confronted with that evidence Hughes “came clean” admitting the truth about her movements that day.
Liverpool Crown Court heard that earlier opportunities to prevent the tragedy had been missed as doctors believed there was a medical explanation for the child’s mystery bruising and other injuries.
Hughes also believed that and went with Ella and her mum, Pagan Clover, on some of the hospital visits.
The judge said that the tragedy was two fold.
“There is the overwhelming grief and loss and bereavement which your failure has wreaked upon your cousin and friend Pagan and her family through the loss of her baby," he said.
“There is the second tragedy in the case and it involves yourself,” he told Hughes, who sat impassively in the dock.
“I have no doubt you were a loving ‘mother’ for Ella whenever you had her in your care.
"The evidence was overwhelmingly that you actually loved Ella and she loved you. Prior to that fateful Sunday you did take care to provide for her every need.”
He added: “Pagan trusted you to take care of that her baby came to no harm while in your care. By the jury’s verdict you on January 21 betrayed that trust.”
Mr Justice King said that “the sad reality” was that if she had taken Ella out with her that day she would not have been killed.
Hughes, now of Rochdale, was found guilty of causing or allowing the death of a child and two counts of perverting the course of justice after an seven-week trial.
Michael Hayton, QC, defending, said that Hughes has no previous convictions and has two sons, aged 14 and 17, from whom she will be separated and on her release will have restrictions applying to her contact with the younger boy.
She was jailed for five years.
Her partner Michael Wild will serve 20 years behind bars after being jailed at the same court on Monday.
Source: Read Full Article