Mother faces life for killing toddler after months of 'horrifying' abuse


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The Independent Online

A mother faces life behind bars today for murdering her two-year-old son after social workers failed to take action to save him from months of “horrifying” abuse.

Rebecca Shuttleworth was described as a “monster” by police after being convicted of murdering Keanu Williams and four counts of child cruelty on Monday.

Detective Chief Inspector Caroline Marsh of West Midlands Police said Keanu’s injuries had revealed a pattern of “horrific and systematic abuse”. She added: “This is the worst case of child abuse I have ever seen.”

Shuttleworth, 25, will be sentenced at Birmingham Crown Court today. Jurors were told how she explained away numerous injuries to her son by saying he had been fighting with siblings or was clumsy.

A serious case review into Keanu’s death is expected to examine social services’ contacts with his mother. In a statement after the trial, the chair of Birmingham’s Safeguarding Children Board acknowledged that chances to take action had been missed.