Two women who subjected a “vulnerable” boy to a terrifying and frenzied attack because he was said to have touched another child have been locked up for eight months.
Lithuanians Danute Rakauskaite and Ingrida Gedminaite lost their temper and self control when told of the victim’s behaviour with a younger boy at a house in Nelson. Rakauskaite called for a weapon, was handed a belt with a “very, very large” metal buckle and set about hitting the victim. She then “stood and watched” as her accomplice punched him, dragged him out of a room by his neck and continued to beat him up, inflicting pain on the youngster for 10 minutes, Burnley Crown Court was told.
The victim was left with “horrendous” bruises and scratches on eight parts of his body in the incident in July, 2011..
Rakauskaite (51), of Fir Street, who sobbed throughout the hearing, and Gedminaite (41), of Netherfield Road, who is five months pregnant, had admitted assault causing actual bodily harm. Both live in Nelson.
Mr Robin Kitching (prosecuting) said the women had been told the victim and the other child had been found with their trousers down, touching each other.
A belt was given to Rakauskaite and she repeatedly hit the victim on the leg. Her co-defendant grabbed the boy, shouted and swore at him and punched him. She then dragged him to the foot of the stairs and delivered more blows for 10 minutes.
Mr Kitching said a witness went outside, saw a police car and told officers what had happened. The victim was later seen by doctors, his injuries were photographed and the defendants arrested.
Rakauskaite accepted in her police interview she had used the belt on the victim and Gedminaite owned up to hitting him. Neither defendant had any previous convictions.
Mr Jeremy Coleman, for Rakauskaite, said it was a “truly exceptional set of circumstances” which led to an isolated incident.
The defendant’s behaviour was a momentary loss of self control and the motivation was not sinister. The solicitor added: “She is very, very remorseful for what’s happened,”
Defending Gedminaite, Miss Katherine Pierpoint said: “She lost control, and frankly, all perspective.
“She is disgusted at her behaviour. She is extremely ashamed and remorseful for what occurred. This was a one-off piece of appalling behaviour that’s completely out or character.”
Sentencing, Judge Beverly Lunt said the victim’s conduct with the other boy, when put into context, was not very serious for a couple of young children.
She told Rakauskaite: “I have seen that belt and the size of it and such behaviour is incomprehensible to right thinking people.”
The judge said of Gedminaite’s conduct: “It must have been terrifying and painful for this child.”
Judge Lunt told both defendants: “The courts have a duty to protect children from such violence, by making it clear sentences of immediate imprisonment will follow.
“And here, where two adults attacked one child, I would be failing in my duty if I didn’t send you to prison immediately today. The point of my sentence is to punish you and also to deter others.”