Brutal father sentenced to 15 years' penal servitude

Joseph Atkins, 44, labourer, pleaded guilty to a brutal offence upon his seven year old daughter.

Mr Murphy, who prosecuted, having detailed the circumstances, said that the child was so badly injured that she was still unable to be present in court.

Prisoner had nothing to say in reply to the Judge. His Lordship said that this was about the worst criminal case, short of murder, that he had ever had to deal with. It was perfectly awful and shocking to think that a man who was the father of a little girl, seven years of age, who had brought her into the world and who was bound to protect and cherish her with all the power in his heart and mind, should treat her in the way the prisoner had done.

He (the Judge) had difficulty in restraining his feeling of indignation, and that if he had not thought over the matter before the event of the prisoner being found guilty, he should perhaps have taken the time even now to consider whether the very severe sentence which he thought it was his duty to pass should be lessened in some degree, but he felt it was quite impossible to give the prisoner a less sentence.

He hoped it would be a lesson to all parents to treat children, whether their own or anybody else’s properly, and that the law regarded such an offence as this with the greatest horror, and was determined, if possible, to prevent such a thing occuring again. The sentence upon the prisoner was one of 15 years’ penal servitude.

This page was added on 06/06/2014.

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