A couple has been found guilty of subjecting their children to horrific acts of cruelty at a Northampton household.
The jury took just three hours today (April 16) to convict the Northampton parents of six counts of wilful neglect and child cruelty after a five-week long trial.
The very worst of the charges surrounded how a boy was kept locked naked and alone in a filthy, dark bedroom with no mattress or lightbulb.
When police found this room, they found the walls and floors covered in excrement. A lock and an exterior alarm were fixed to the door and the blind over the curtain was nailed in place.
Northampton Crown Court also heard how the father would beat the boy regularly, squeeze his genitals and order siblings to hit him as a form of punishment.
Another child was made to sleep in a urine-soaked bed when they did not help them with their bed-wetting problems.
When he took the stand, the father in the case burst into tears and tried to dismiss the allegations as his attempts to handle his children's behavioural problems.
He even claimed the lack of furniture or toys in the bedrooms was because he was planning on decorating, and said he treated the boy who was locked in the dark bedroom 'like his other children'.
But the jury took only three hours to convict the couple of child cruelty.
The mum in the case was found guilty on several counts of failing to protect her children from the abusive father.
However, the jury found the couple not guilty of several counts of regularly beating other children in the house, and thought this was a form of chastisement that did not cause unnecessary harm or suffering.
The couple were remanded into custody and will be sentenced at Northampton Crown Court on May 28.
Northamptonshire Police lead investigator, DC Nicola Langston, said: “This has been a serious and complex investigation undertaken by the police with the cooperation of social services, the health and education authorities.
“It has been undeniably difficult because it involves the evidence from young children who were asked to recall traumatic and distressing events from their past.
“They have suffered significant harm and hopefully with this closure they will be able to recover and move forward with their lives.
“The prosecutors, Grace Hale and James Armstrong-Holmes, have dedicated innumerable hours and effort in securing this conviction.”