Left- John Ward, Right- Kelly Horner

John Ward, 19 and Kelly Horner, 23, both from Hull were found guilty yesterday of child abuse at Hull Crown Court.

Ward and Horner were taken to court after a five-month-old baby girl was left with five percent burns and two broken legs back in April.

The court heard how the pair spent two days downing 30 ecstasy pills, 20 Valium  amphetamines, cannabis and booze when they were supposed to be in charge of the child’s care.

Ward had placed the baby he was babysitting in a bath with the hot and cold taps running. Ward then proceeded to make a cup of tea and forgot about the baby for ten minutes.

He then heard the baby’s screams and rushed back upstairs to find the baby under the hot tap. In desperation he attempted to scrub the baby’s face with a towel, peeling her skin. In a panic, he woke up his girlfriend Kelly and they both decided to take the baby to hospital, five hours later!

The couple lied to hospital staff saying that the burns were caused by a cup of tea, but plastic surgeons said that was not the case as there were no splash marks; the baby must have been submerged in water.

Ward admitted in a police interview that he had previously bathed the baby and forgotten about it when he was ‘stoned’. The baby turned blue but he didn’t take the baby to the hospital for urgent medical attention.

Ward’s barrister explained to the court that he was a foster child who had mental health problems, which meant he could become a paranoid schizophrenic.

He is a young man who does not bear the maturity and understanding of someone his age. He has difficulty working out what is safe or not safe, real or not real, what is good or what is bad.

The Judge had no sympathy for the pair and said he was sure the baby was in agony and struggled. Pictures taken within an hour of arrival at the hospital showed the child’s suffering from burns.

The judge also said:

She is so young she is not capable of explaining her suffering which is inculpable. In many respects the sentence should be longer.

Ward has been sentenced for eight years and six months in prison for causing actual bodily harmed, grievous bodily harm and child cruelty.

Kelly Horner will be sentenced on 14 December for child cruelty at Kingston-Upon-Hull Crown Court.