Twisted Scots woman who trapped toddler, two, in homemade cage after boy, four, fled through window dodges jail

Twisted Scots woman who trapped toddler, two, in homemade cage after boy, four, fled through window dodges jail

March 12, 2021

A TWISTED Scots woman who trapped a two-year-old in a homemade cage after a four-year-old boy escaped through a window has dodged a jail sentence.

Claire Boyle, from Ayrshire, kept the youngest victim in a modified cot and claimed it was for his protection.

We previously told how a court heard Boyle, 34, had previously tried to sell a child for £1 million and had shaken him, shouted at him and abandoned him.

Boyle's wicked actions were revealed when another child, aged four, fled from the flat they were staying in and was found walking the streets alone.

As reported by the BBC, Boyle and her partner Timothy Johnstone, 77, were both convicted of neglect in February, regarding offences which took place in October 2018.

NSPCC Scotland said Boyle and Johnstone failed to fulfil the children's "basic needs" and branded it an "alarming case of child neglect".

Sheriff Higgins convicted Boyle of neglecting both children, while Johnstone was convicted of neglecting the four-year-old.

Yesterday, Boyle was ordered to carry out 250 hours of community service and Johnstone was handed 180 hours.

However the sheriff warned them a jail sentence was still an option if they failed to engage in rehabilitation.

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In 2018, police visited the property and discovered the younger child trapped in the improvised cage in a bedroom.

The bottom of the cot had been removed and strapped to the top to stop the child getting out.

A case review has been launched between South Ayrshire Council and East Ayrshire Council and is being led by Professor Paul Martin, chair of the child protection committee.

An NSPCC Scotland spokesperson said: “Between them, Boyle and Johnstone failed to meet the basic needs of two children in what is an alarming case of child neglect.

“It’s a stark reminder that children are entirely reliant on the adults around them for their care and support.

“NSPCC Scotland works to help prevent the abuse and neglect of children. Parents or carers who are struggling – and anyone concerned about a child – can contact our helpline for advice and support.”

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