Ugandan maid pleads guilty to baby torture

December 8, 2014 3:29 pm
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Ugandan police wanted to charge Jolly Tumuhiirwe with attempted murder, but the maid eventually faced torture charges during her court appearance in Kampala/AFP
Ugandan police wanted to charge Jolly Tumuhiirwe with attempted murder, but the maid eventually faced torture charges during her court appearance in Kampala/AFP
KAMPALA, Uganda, Dec 7 – A Ugandan maid pleaded guilty on Monday to torturing a baby in a case that shocked the country after a graphic video of her abusing the child was made public.

The 22-year-old maid, Jolly Tumuhiirwe, faces up to 15 years in prison for the assault, which the local press branded “spine-chilling”.

Worried parents, who installed a hidden camera to film when they were at work, were shocked to see the footage showing the maid throwing the 18-month-old baby girl to the floor.

Tumuhiirwe, who the parents told Ugandan newspapers had worked for them for only two weeks, is seen to apparently try to force feed the baby, before slapping her hard.

She then kicked the child’s face and stomach before putting her entire weight on the girl’s back, and then dragged her out of the room, apparently unconscious. She also smashed the child on the head with a torch.

The baby, named in Ugandan media as Arnella, was left bruised and shaken by the abuse.

The video has been seen or shared hundreds of thousands of times on social media.

Ugandan newspapers called the footage “spine-chilling” and “very disturbing.”

After her arrest, police said Tumuhiirwe would be charged with attempted murder, but in court in the Ugandan capital Kampala on Monday, she faced torture charges alone.

State prosecutor Joyce Tushabe said the maid, who had no lawyer, “was remorseful” in court.

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