A guard who repeatedly beat an 8-month-old baby just 30 minutes after starting her first shift will spend six months in jail, a judge ordered, recalling the importance of taking care of minors.
“The protection of children is one of the most fundamental values of our society,” said Judge Yvan Poulin in condemning Aisha Thornton a few days ago at the Montreal courthouse.
Thornton, 44, committed her crime in March 2018, when she had just gotten a babysitting job with a Montreal family. And right after being alone with the toddler, she pulled him out of his crib to, for no apparent reason, mistreat him.
Except that what she did not know is that the parents had installed a surveillance camera, and that the mother was just watching it.
“The mother saw Mme Thornton hit his child on the head, with both hands open, the judge said. The video shows six to eight shots. “
Not a first
Immediately, the mom came home and the police were contacted. Arrested, Thornton eventually pleaded guilty to assault. Fortunately, the child did not suffer any after-effects.
Upon verification, it turned out that this was not the first time that the criminal had attacked a child. In 2007, she abandoned a boy she was responsible for, receiving a suspended sentence of 18 months.
Then, in 2010, she received another conditional sentence, this time of 15 months, for assault causing harm to a 3-year-old baby.
“Vulnerable and helpless”
Despite everything, Thornton felt that his latest crime did not deserve an additional entry in his file, and demanded absolution.
Justice Poulin, however, did not accept this request, judging it too lenient.
“Sentences imposed for crimes that involve child abuse must reflect the fault and harm for preying on a vulnerable and helpless human being,” he said.
Especially since the parents, even though they were in no way responsible for what had happened, felt guilty for leaving their baby in the woman’s hands.
“They explained that they do not want other children to be victims of this ill-intentioned woman,” said the magistrate.
Instead, he sentenced the woman to six months less a day in prison, with three years’ probation.
Aisha Thornton then risks having problems with immigration, as she is engaged in a process to obtain her permanent residence.