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Killer who inflicted 'car crash' injuries on toddler tried to blame her mother

Coleman will serve at least 17 years for the killing of baby Evelyn Credit: Northants Police

A man who inflicted horrific injuries on a one-year-old girl before trying to blame the child's mother for her death has been given a life sentence.

Ryan Coleman, who's 23, was found guilty of a deliberate and violent assault on little Evelyn in a house in Kettering on April 26, 2018.

She died in hospital three days later after suffering injuries consistent with a car crash.

The jury of seven men and five women returned their unanimous verdict in just over four hours after a three week trial at Birmingham Crown Court.

Coleman, of no fixed address, will serve life with a minimum of 17 years.

Coleman, who stormed out of court on a number of occasions during the trial, including leaving the stand in the middle of being cross-examined, failed to call 999 to get Evelyn help. Instead it was Evelyn’s mother, called home from work by Coleman, who called emergency services.

Despite the overwhelming evidence against him, Coleman continued to claim that Evelyn had become unresponsive due to falling off a 36cm-high toddler bed. He then tried to blame Evelyn’s mother, who was at work at the time of the assault, by claiming that she had caused the injuries trying to rouse the little girl through resuscitation.

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Inspector Stuart Hitchon, said Coleman had put also put her grieving mother through the trauma of the trial.

Coleman put the child's mother through the agony of a trial Credit: Northants Police

Because of him, Evelyn’s mother is now unable to enjoy the many things involved in watching a child grow up.

“She will never be able to see Evelyn take her first steps, send her off on her first day at school, see what kind of personality she developed and what interests and hobbies she took up as she grew into a young adult - Ryan Coleman has taken all of those things away from her forever and this leaves a pain like no other.

– Detective Inspector Stuart Hitchon, Northants Police

On sentencing, at which Ryan Coleman decided not to be present, Judge - Mrs Justice Sara Cockerill DBE, described Coleman’s “serious and violent assault on a defenceless baby”, how “having committed this terrible act” Coleman “failed to call emergency services”, how his story was “utterly lacking in credibility” and that he “showed no remorse for anyone but himself”.

Evelyn's mum has spoken of her heartbreaking loss Credit: Family picture

In a statement, Evelyn's mum spoke of her heartbreak at losing her daughter.

“Surviving the loss of my baby girl has been the hardest and most painful thing that I, my family and my children have ever had to endure.

“I have lost my whole life - my child, my baby, my normality. My life will never be the same again. Every day is a struggle and my grief overwhelms me - some days I cannot cope knowing that she is not here with us as she should be.

“These have been the longest and hardest months of my life. If it was not for my mum and my sister supporting me through everything I would no longer be here. I would never ever wish this pain on anyone. I have a hole in my heart that will never be filled again.

– Mum's statement