A mother who viciously beat her daughter when the girl got Bible verses wrong has been sentenced to prison in Pennsylvania on Wednesday, 25 October. 41-year-old Rhonda Shoffner faces two and a half to five years behind bars after pleading guilty to several charges.
Authorities had said that the 13-years-old girl was forced by Shoffner in March to kneel on a bathroom mat and answer questions about Bible verses. When the girl answered a question incorrectly, police said that Shoffner slammed her head into the drywall.
Dauphin County District Attorney's Office said that Shoffner had slammed her daughter's head into the wall at least five times. She then strangled her and told her she was going to kill her.
Fearing for her life, the girl attempted to fight off Shoffner, who bit her. She then told the girl to leave "and don't ever come back." The girl fled to her father, who took her to a police station.
Dauphin County Deputy District Attorney Sean McCormack said on Thursday (26 October): "This was an extremely scary situation for this young victim to have to endure. Fortunately she is doing well now and is in a safe place."
Shoffner pleaded guilty to charges of aggravated assault, strangulation, child endangerment and making terroristic threats. Authorities said she was intoxicated when the incident took place and would have to serve five years of probation after her prison term.
She was also told by Dauphin County Judge John F. Cherry that she would have to undergo drug and alcohol counselling and would be subject to random drugs and alcohol tests after her release.
Along with the assault on her daughter, the District Attorney's Office said that Shoffner had pleaded guilty to another assault charge relating to an incident in January 2017, where she had hit and bitten a woman in a car during an argument.