Man bit and beat toddler so badly his mother didn’t recognise him

A woman has been jailed after she tricked a man into thinking he was the father of a baby that he then bit and battered.

The baby was so badly treated at the hands of Nicholas Lessiter that when he was returned to his real mother he was ‘unrecognisable’.

Lessiter had been tricked by girlfriend Rebecca Barnes who also convinced her own mother that the baby was hers.

In fact, the 20-month-old belonged to a friend of hers and she had agreed to look after him because the real mother was struggling as a single mum.

He had injuries so bad to the back of his throat that it would have caused his breathing to have been hindered, Mold Crown Court was told.

While in their care the boy suffered from a broken collar bone, bruising across his body, bitemarks to his right shoulder, bitemarks on his right elbow, injuries to his mouth and injuries to the back of his throat.

The child’s real mother told the court: ‘My decision to leave him in her care was the worst decision of my life. I deeply regret it.It will haunt me for the rest of my life.

‘When my son needed me most I could not be there to cuddle and comfort him.’

After the abuse she was only allowed to see her son three times a week, supervised. However he was eventually returned and she said that day was ‘the best day of my life’.

Lessiter had initially been charged with orally raping the child, but the charges were later dropped.

Judge Niclas Parry said: ‘His face was so swollen that he did not look like her little boy.’

Turning to Barnes, he added: ‘You took that child into your home when you knew that Lessiter would be present, a man you know was capable of using extreme violence upon you, kicking and biting you. You left that child in his care.’