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Last Updated: Tuesday, 6 February 2007, 16:13 GMT
Babysitter's life term for attack
Nicola Radford
Radford must serve a minimum of two and a half years
A babysitter who tried to smother a baby boy three times before breaking his leg has been jailed for life.

Nicola Radford, 21, of Haweswater Avenue, Ince, Wigan, attacked the boy at his home, and then in hospital after his mother asked her to stay with him.

She was convicted of causing grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent after a trial at Liverpool Crown Court.

Radford, who has a personality disorder and a low IQ, must serve a minimum of two and a half years.

Judge David Harris QC, sentencing, said he had to impose a life sentence because of his concern to protect children in the future.

This is a particularly nasty case involving several assaults on an innocent baby
Det Insp Alan Lyon, Greater Manchester Police

The 11-month-old baby was taken to Wigan Infirmary on 21 November by his mother, who told staff he had stopped breathing. He had earlier been in Radford's care.

On 24 November, the mother asked Radford to stay with the boy overnight in hospital, where the 21-year-old tried to smother him twice.

The next morning a nurse noticed there was something wrong with the child's right leg and it was found he had suffered a spiral fracture, which occurs when the leg is twisted with force, the court heard.

Radford had denied three counts of causing grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent and one of GBH.

Speaking after the hearing on Tuesday, Det Insp Alan Lyon, of Greater Manchester Police, said that thankfully the baby was now fit and well and living with foster parents.

"This is a particularly nasty case involving several assaults on an innocent baby and it is incredibly difficult to understand how anybody could hurt somebody so small and vulnerable," he said.


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