Manchester

Ella-Rose Clover: Man guilty of toddler punch murder

Ella-Rose Clover Image copyright GMP
Image caption Ella-Rose Clover was temporarily left in the care of Michael Wild

A man who repeatedly punched a toddler left in his care has been convicted of her murder.

Ella-Rose Clover died in 2018 due to "internal bleeding and cardiac arrest following the deliberate infliction of blows", Liverpool Crown Court heard.

Her mother Pagan Clover broke down in tears as Michael Wild was convicted.

She had left Ella with the girl's godmother, Sharleen Hughes, who then left the 22-month-old with her 31-year-old partner Wild while she did errands.

Image copyright Lynda Roughley
Image caption Michael Wild and Sharleen Hughes were convicted after a six-week trial

Prosecutor Paul Reid QC said Ella suffered "deliberate infliction of blows to the abdomen" by Wild in Wythenshawe, Greater Manchester, on 21 January 2018.

The jury heard that, two months before her death, Wild had assaulted Ella, which led to emergency surgery to remove part of her bowel.

Mr Reid said: "Sharleen Hughes was, or ought to have been, aware of the risk of Michael Wild causing serious physical harm to Ella and she failed to take reasonable steps to protect her."

Ms Clover told police after her daughter's death that she would not have agreed to Wild, who she described as "not sociable", looking after Ella.

Hughes, 36, was found guilty of causing or allowing the death of a child and two counts of attempting to pervert the course of justice.

The court heard the latter counts related to her providing misleading information to the police and getting her son, his friend and Wild to lie to officers.

Wild, of Morland Road, Gleadless, Sheffield, and Hughes, of Mardyke, College Bank, Rochdale, are to be sentenced at a later date.

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