Hull child murderer and mother who 'stood by and let daughter die' jailed

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A Hull child murderer who smother his girlfriend's 23-month-old daughter because she was crying has today been jailed for life with a minimum of 20 years.

Jonathan Garner, 26, showed no emotion as he was sentenced for murdering Mia Gregson at their home in Dorset Street, Hull in February 2014.

Jonathan Garner, 26, showed no emotion as he was sentenced for murdering Mia Gregson at their home in Dorset Street, Hull in February 2014.

Jonathan Garner, 26, showed no emotion as he was sentenced for murdering Mia Gregson at their home in Dorset Street, Hull in February 2014.

Mia's mother, Samantha Gregson, 24, was also jailed for four years for causing or allowing her death and sobbed in the dock at Sheffield Crown Court as her fate was revealed.

The judge, Mr Justice Goss, said he believed Garner, of Thirlmere Avenue, Hull, had tried to smother Mia before and was also responsible for a series of other injuries found on the little girl when her body was examined.

After collapsing at home, Mia went on to suffer a cardiac arrest and severe and irreversible brain damage. She died on February 13, 2014.

The judge told Garner: "This was a bad case of child cruelty involving abusive and violent behaviour and, ultimately, the use of fatal violence on a very young and vulnerable child."

Read more: Yorkshire man guilty of murdering girlfriend's 23-month-old daughter
The judge said he accepted that Gregson, of Melling Close, Chesterfield, who has had two more children since Mia's death, was controlled and abused by Garner, and that she had been a loving mother to her daughter before the relationship started.

But he told her: "You were warned at the outset that Jonathan Garner posed a risk to Mia and his subsequent behaviour confirmed that."

Following the sentencing, an NSPCC spokesman said: “Garner’s brutality cruelly cut short the life of little Mia, subjecting her to horrendous abuse and neglect whilst, unbelievably, her mother stood by.

“Babies and young children are completely dependent upon the adults who care for them and Garner and Gregson abandoned that responsibility with tragic consequences.

“We all have a duty to look out for children’s welfare and anyone concerned about a child can call the NSPCC helpline on 0808 800 5000, free of charge. If a child is in immediate danger, please call 999.”