A couple who sexually assaulted a 13-month-old girl and photographed the assault have been sentenced to prison.
Michael Chase, 52, and his wife Lara, 46, have been sentenced to 14 years and 13 years in prison for a case the judge referred to as “the worst case of abuse of a baby" he's ever seen.
Michael and Lara took photos while sexually abusing the infant they were babysitting, which they later circulated to friends in a WhatsApp messaging group, Daily Mail reports. The 13-month-old belonged to a longtime friend of Michael.
The couple was married in June 2014 and repeatedly abused the baby throughout the following six months.
“This is the worst abuse of a baby I have seen and the pictures are quite appalling and horrific to look at,” sentencing judge Sean Enright said in court. “The feeling of revulsion returns every time those photographs are opened.”
According to the prosecutor for the CPS, Nicola Davis, the baby slept at the couple’s home four times during the six month period.
“They trusted the defendants with their child,” Davis said of the child’s parents. “They had no idea at all of the abuse she was suffering.”
Michael Chase pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual assault and possession of indecent and extreme images, according to Metro.
Lara denied all allegations and claimed she didn’t know the photos existed. Her claims were dismissed, however, and she was charged with two counts of sexual abuse and the distribution of indecent images.