'Devious' Kathryn Smith jailed for stamping daughter to death

Judge brands 23-year-old mother 'manipulative and selfish' as she sentences her to serve at least 24 years

Police images of Kathryn Smith and Matthew Rigby

A mother who stamped her 21-month-old daughter to death has been sentenced to at least 24 years in prison.

Kathryn Smith, 23, was convicted of murder after savagely attacking her child, Ayeeshia Jane, at the family home in Staffordshire on 1 May, 2014.

Passing sentence at Birmingham Crown Court today, Mrs Justice Geraldine Andrews said: "You are a devious, manipulative, selfish, young woman who would stop at nothing to get your own way.

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To that end you were prepared to tell lie after lie."

The judge described Ayeeshia as a "particularly vulnerable victim" who was thin and slight of frame.

"She was killed in her own home by her own mother – that is the grossest breach of trust," she said.

Smith, who was also convicted of child cruelty, wept throughout the sentencing, reports The Independent.

Her former partner, Matthew Rigby, 22, of Nottingham, was jailed for three years and six months for causing or allowing the death of a child.

Ayeeshia suffered a fatal tear in her heart, an injury usually only found in car crash victims, had several broken ribs, dark bruising and swelling of more than 3.5ins on her back and had bitten through her own tongue.

Ricky Booth, her 21-year-old father, said his daughter had been "let down" by the system.

Social services had been supervising Ayeeshia, who was taken away from Smith in 2013 and placed with foster carers for five months. She was given back to her mother seven months before her death.

Derbyshire Safeguarding Children's Board is currently carrying out a serious case review to see what lessons can be learned from her death.

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