SHOCKING: Maryborough's Jesse Lee James pleaded guilty to causing horrific injuries to a two-year-old girl.
SHOCKING: Maryborough's Jesse Lee James pleaded guilty to causing horrific injuries to a two-year-old girl. Contributed

SICKENING: M'boro 'tough guy' broke toddler's back

A MUSCLE-bound child basher, whose sickening attack left a two-year-old with a broken back and pelvis, could soon be back on our streets.

Despite being previously convicted of assaulting a three-year-old, Jesse Lee James, 29, can apply for parole immediately, after pleading guilty in Maryborough District Court yesterday to bashing another little girl.

James' crimes came to light when a Child Health and Safety caseworker visited the girl's home and noticed her injuries.

The exact details of the assault have not been revealed but the caseworker saw the girl's stomach was extremely swollen.

She was taken to hospital where it was found she had significant injuries, including paralysis of the bowel and fractures to her pelvic bone and vertebrae.

The child remained in hospital for 15 days.

Judge Tony Moynihan described the injuries as having been caused by a "high energy force" adding that James had a "callous disregard for the welfare of the child".

He said while the child had since recovered with no permanent physical injury, there was no doubt significant harm had been caused.

"She has been adversely affected as a result of the offending and the devastating effect your actions had," Judge Moynihan said.

"She is a brave little girl who is making good progress in her current safe environment."

In the aftermath of the attack, James was questioned by police, but the interview was described as "self-serving".

Maryborough's Jesse Lee James pleaded guilty to causing horrific injuries to a two-year-old girl.
Maryborough's Jesse Lee James pleaded guilty to causing horrific injuries to a two-year-old girl. Contributed

James had a previous conviction for the assault of a three-year-old child, the court heard, and had previously been imprisoned for other offences.

The court heard he had a tragic past with a deprived background, having lost his brother to suicide and at times considered taking his own life.

Judge Moynihan said despite this history it was the court's responsibility protect people in the community, particularly young children, from his actions.

James was given a head sentence of six years in prison.

Having already served about two years behind bars while waiting for his day in court, he was given immediate parole eligibility.

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