Lakechia Schonta Stanley (pictured), 34, received a 78-year sentence for brutalizing her then 8 and 10-year-old daughters by using such torturous punishment tactics as waterboarding, beating them with baseball bats and electrical cords, and making the girls take scalding hot or bone-chilling, frigid showers for any alleged wrongdoing, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
The abuse came to light back in October 2011, when the St. Louis mom’s then 10-year-old daughter revealed to a school librarian that her arm was in pain because she had been beaten with a baseball bat for failing to clean the kitchen at home. When the librarian touched the child’s arm it was entirely cold. The child was taken to a hospital where attending physicians discovered that the girl’s arm had been battered so badly, her blood circulation had actually constricted. The child also told authorities that her 8-year-old younger sister had also sustained a bat beating for remaining in the shower too long.
Stanley, who faced 34 felonies, including multiple counts of assault and endangering the welfare of a child, employed a kind of “systematic torture” according to case prosecutors, who also accused the woman of inflicting severe emotional trauma on her children as well.
“What the defendant did to three of her own children far exceeds the definition of child abuse and amounts to systematic torture. She was supposed to be their mother, the one person they could trust. Instead she became a symbol of betrayal and fear, using every tool at her disposal to beat and torture her own innocent children,” assistant circuit attorney Tanja Engelhardt wrote in her memo to persuade the judge that Stanley was deserving of a strict sentence according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Meanwhile Stanley’s husband, Andrew Rui Stanley (pictured), 30, who pleaded guilty last year to 42 felony counts on related charges and a few additional ones, was handed down a 160-year prison sentence.