Both Star Hobson’s killer and her mother should be in jail

As for Star, social workers were called five times by the relatives involved (Image: SWNS/Ben Lack Photography LTD)

The moment I first heard about the tragic case of a 16-month-old baby Hobson star ‘stamped’ to death by her mother’s mate, I burst into tears.

Every night, I watch every shocking new revelation during the two-month trial – from Star being grabbed by the throat to two fractures in her right leg ’caused by twisting force’, which were refract like them. healed – and every night, I cry.

I am touched because I know all too well the impact this kind of terrible abuse can have. My adopted son Tony went through a similar hell at the hands of his biological parents, but luckily, he’s still alive today – I’ve been fighting for children’s rights ever since.

On Tuesday, a court ruled that Star endured months of physical assault and psychological torment before suffering ‘extremely catastrophic’ injuries at home. Judge Mrs Justice Lambert found the child’s mother, Savannah Brockhill, committed murder.

Her mother, Frankie Smith, was cleared of murder but found guilty little cause or allow her to die.

I was expecting them both to be sentenced to life in prison today and unfortunately that was just the case for Brockhill – Smith was sentenced to 8 years.

During the trial, I thought of my son, Tony.

When he was just 41 days old, Tony’s biological parents, Jody Simpson and Tony Smith, swung his legs so violently that they broke eight places.

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They agonized him over not getting medical treatment for 10 days, leading to multiple organ failure and sepsis when he was finally admitted to Evelina London Children’s Hospital. He almost died so he was given life support.

When I first met him – as his potential adoptive parent, along with my husband – he was 4 months old and still in the hospital. His feet were plastered but his arms had just come off them the day before. He was extremely underweight, withdrawn, inactive, and took large amounts of pain medication.

My heart breaks to see him like that and hear about his story.

His recovery has been a roller coaster ride for all of us as his injury has been around for so long. Part of his hip is missing, he is deaf in his right ear and he had to have his leg amputated.

Notably, Tony’s biological parents will not initially be prosecuted because the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) initially thought there was not enough evidence for the case.

So when we officially adopted him at 16 months old, we filed an appeal from the victim as his legal guardian. With the support of local MP, Tom Tugendhat, we pushed the case to court in 2018. Tony’s biological parents were found guilty of assaulting, ill-treating and neglecting him and were arrested. sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Tony could very easily suffer the same fate as Star Hobson (Image: S Meddle/ITV/REX/Shutterstock)

However, we didn’t think that was long enough so we started a petition calling for tougher sentences for convicted child abusers. We have successfully lobbied for Make Tony’s Law come true – means that those found guilty of causing or allowing a child to suffer serious physical harm will have their prison sentence increased to 14 years and life in prison if the abuse results in death.

I was on the moon to find out last month that it was backed by the Department of Justice. I was overwhelmed because it was exactly the result we wanted after more than three and a half years of campaigning.

Tony’s law will make absolutely no difference to my son’s case – his biological parents will still be released next year – it’s about bringing justice to the lives of children who have been abused. future abuse. It’s just a pity it hasn’t been implemented yet so it could affect the sentencing of Brockhill and Smith today.

My son could easily suffer the same fate as Star Hobson or a six-year-old Arthur Labinjo-HughesWho is it recently? killed by stepmother. Thankfully, Tony is still alive today.

Arthur Labinjo-Hughes was recently killed by his stepmother (Image: Family Handout/PA Wire)

I believe social services need a major overhaul so that cases like Star and Arthur was properly picked up – and deal with it before the worst happens.

As for Star, social workers were called five times by concerned relatives who noticed bruises on her body, and police also visited the home. In each case, Brockhill and Smith tried to convince social workers that the toddler’s markings were random or that the complaints were made maliciously by people who didn’t like the relationship. their relationship.

I understand that locking doors is difficult for everyone, but this is completely unacceptable. These cases need to be handled properly and effectively.

Luckily for us, Tony’s future looks promising. His attitude is to never give up and we will never give up on him.

After shedding countless tears over Star, it’s hard to deal with the fact that her mother won’t spend the rest of her life in prison.

If Tony’s Law helps bring justice to just one child in the future, it will all be worth it.

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Huynh Nguyen

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