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A mother-of-two has been sentenced after neglecting her children to the point where they smelled of urine, had food in their hair and had dirt on their feet.The woman in her 20s, who we are not identifying to protect the identity of the children, appeared at Lynn Magistrates’ Court on Thursday. She lives in the town.She had previously pleaded guilty to two counts of willfully neglecting, ill-treating or exposing her children in a manner likely to cause them unnecessary suffering or injury to health.
She had also admitted one count of assault by beating of an emergency worker, and following her conviction on November 16, a pre-sentence report was carried out.Crown prosecutor Colette Carper told the court this week that on June 14 last year, one of the woman’s children was found in bed with their mother.Her hair was matted, with dry food embedded in it. They were covered in dirt, and the room smelled of urine.At the same time, the younger child was asleep in another room. They had dirty hands and feet, also had matted hair, and the room smelled of urine too.When police attended the address, the woman assaulted a constable, causing immediate pain to his groin and causing him to leap forward.A test revealed that at the time, the defendant had 113mcg of alcohol per 100ml of breath in her system. The test was undertaken to ascertain how drunk she was.Both of the children were aged under five.Ms Harper said the woman was of previous good character, and determined that she was of “medium culpability” for the child neglect.Her offences meant she faced a maximum of five years in prison. However, after reading the pre-sentence report, magistrates – chaired by Louise Barber – handed her an 18-month community order instead.This will require her to complete up to 20 Rehabilitation Activity Requirement days, as well as 300 hours of unpaid work.She has also been made the subject of an alcohol abstinence order. For this, she will wear a tag which monitors her alcohol intake for 120 days, prohibiting her from drinking anything.The woman will also pay court costs of £145, a £114 victim surcharge, and £50 in compensation to the constable she assaulted.Mitigating, solicitor George Sorrell said: “This is a very complicated matter involving two very young children.“If you accept the report, it is up to her to work very closely with the probation service to complete this order without any breaches whatsoever – and to somehow convince the courts that she can become a good and caring mother, which is what she wants to be.“The order involved two things. One of them seems to be taken care of, and that is the boyfriend – he is now ex-boyfriend – and the other is getting her alcohol problem under control and coming to some understanding that her children should come first.”