Woman jailed for battering boy at house in Kilwinning
A woman who battered an eight-year-old boy and pierced his skin with a knife has been jailed for 15 months.
Helen Stark, 28, admitted attacking the child over several days at a house in Kilwinning, North Ayrshire.
She was caught after a neighbour, who was looking through a window, spotted the abuse.
When police arrived she claimed the boy's injuries were accidental but later admitted guilt after doctors saw bruises, swelling and scratches on him.
Kilmarnock Sheriff Court heard that when police confronted Stark she claimed that the witness who reported her was mistaken and she had been trying to stop the boy banging bottles of juice on the floor.
Doctors who examined the child found extensive bruising to his head, neck, back and arms, along with swelling and various scratches and cuts "highly suggestive of non-accidental injury".
Stark, of Lesmahagow, South Lanarkshire, admitted assaulting the boy by repeatedly striking him on the head and body with her hands, presenting a knife, holding it against him and puncturing his skin.
She repeatedly seized him and threatened violence, grabbed him by the hair and repeatedly struck his head against a door and window sill, all to his severe injury.