An Oklahoma woman has been sentenced to life in prison for abusing her seven-year-old granddaughter while dressed as a witch. The 51-year-old from Oklahoma City was sentenced to three consecutive life terms on Thursday (13 April).
Geneva Robinson pleaded guilty to five counts of felony child abuse in February, according to The Oklahoman. Robinson, who is accused of dressing up as a witch named "Nelda", admitted to scratching the child's neck, hitting the girl in the fac, striking her with a rolling pin on the hand and cutting her hair while she slept.
Assistant District Attorney Merydith Easter described the "house of horrors" the victim lived in for months in 2014, The Oklahoman reported.
"What she did was horrific and what she did will forever impact this child and her siblings," Easter said. "She deserves the same amount of mercy that she showed this child, and that's none."
Easter said the child was kicked, hit, whipped, burned and "repeatedly tortured".
Prosecutors also alleged the child was hung with a dog leash by her arms from the garage ceiling and whipped. She was forced to sleep outside with the dogs, not given enough food or medical care and was barred from going to school. The victim was also told that witches and other creatures lived in the home's attic.
Footage of the abuse was shown to the judge, including a video in which Robinson and her 33-year-old boyfriend Joshua Granger are seen telling the child that she is to blame for her grandmother being ill.
The girl pleaded with the "witch" that she will be good to her grandmother. Robinson replied, "You lie, you lie, you lie, little girl."
The girl was later told that witches eat bad boys and girls.
Police reported Robinson was arrested after she took the malnourished girl to a hospital in September 2014. She claimed she "could not control" the child.
Oklahoma County District Judge Michele McElwee held up two photos of the victim – one before the abuse and one after – before handing out her ruling. The first photo, taken when the girl was five years old, shows the victim with "sparkling eyes", a full head of hair and a big smile. The later photo, meanwhile, showed the child covered in bruises and blisters, with a buzzed head and no smile.
"You know what died? Those sparkling eyes from an innocent girl," McElwee said.
Robinson's defence attorney Tanya Jones argued that she understood she "went too far" but that she "ruled with an iron fist" because she grew up in a time where physical discipline was the norm.
According to The Oklahoman, Granger was also sentenced to one count of felony child abuse.
Granger, who admitted to helping Robinson scare the child while pretending to be a demon named "Coogro", was sentenced to 30 years in prison.