Chloe Valentine manslaughter sentence appeal: Jailed mother cites ‘trauma’ for missing court


Updated 3 hours 35 minutes ago

Chloe Valentine died after motorbike crashes.

A woman jailed for killing her young daughter by forcing her to ride a motorbike and crash has cited “trauma” for not being in court for a sentence appeal hearing.

Ashley Jean Polkinghorne, 22, was absent as the prosecution argued against her eight-year prison sentence and non-parole term of four years and nine months.

The prosecution also is appealing against a seven-year jail sentence with non-parole of four years and two months for her former partner Benjamin McPartland, 28.

Polkinghorne’s lawyer Brian Deegan told the Court of Criminal Appeal his client was unwell.

“My client is not present and apologises to the court, she is not well,” he said.

“She has advised my junior that she does not wish to appear in court, [as] she’s still suffering psychologically from the trauma associated with all of this and she just does not want to appear again.”

Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Adam Kimber told the three judges hearing the appeal that the sentences were “manifestly inadequate” and had “shocked the public consciousness”.

Mr Kimber said a strong message needed to be sent to others “to deter those who look after children from placing them at risk”.

“There is a real need to deter people, when things go wrong, from doing nothing.

“Eight-and-a-half hours passed before an ambulance was called because the child had stopped breathing.”

DPP cites girl’s shocking injuries

Mr Kimber says Chloe Valentine was forced back onto the motorbike over three days and sustained multiple serious injuries.

He says she got whiplash from riding into chicken wire, hit a lemon tree at 40 kilometres per hour, struck statues and crashed into a shed face-first.

DPP argues for longer jail terms for Benjamin McPartland and Ashlee Polkinghorne.

The DPP says Polkinghorne was heard laughing during a mobile phone video and the woman and her then-partner had smoked cannabis and been on the internet for hours after the four-year-old girl lost consciousness.

He says internet records show the pair had been on Facebook and online banking.

Mr Kimber says an interview McPartland gave after the girl was taken to hospital was disturbing.

“It is chilling the way he described what happened to the child on the Tuesday,” the court was told.

“There was an enormous amount of support from Polkinghorne’s family and various government and non-government agencies.”

The court heard when ambulance officers arrived to deal with the injured child her eyes were black and swollen, she had a cut to her head and there were bruises all over her body.

The girl had at least 39 injuries, the hearing was told.

Mr Kimber asked the court to look at post-mortem photographs of Chloe Valentine.

“I ask the court to look at the state of that child. That was the state she was in … and yet nothing was done,” he said.

“This is a particularly egregious breach of a duty of care and it makes it a serious example of manslaughter.”

‘Abusive, controlling’ adult supervision

Mr Kimber told the court of the young girl’s fear of her mother’s partner ahead of her death.

“The child was extremely fearful of McPartland and McPartland had demonstrated behaviour that was abusive, controlling and at times violent,” the hearing was told.

“This sentence tends to push down the sentence that would be appropriate when a child dies even there’s an egregious breach of trust over two days and there are mitigating circumstances.

“A proper sentence has to reflect society’s disapproval of the conduct.”

The DPP says the child could not resist the adults when forced onto the motorbike and could not get herself medical care, making her “totally reliable in those in the house to help her”.

“The moral culpability could not be any higher.

“Polkinghorne made a deliberate choice to prioritise her own interest and this is where I say general deterrence looms large in a case like this.”

Mr Kimber says the jailed pair’s prospects of rehabilitation are questionable and they might want to have children in the future.

“Polkinghorne is still a young woman, it must be highly likely that she will have further children herself in the future or that she will form a relationship or relationships with men who do,” he argued.

“It is inevitable that she will have care of children in the future, given her age.

“That makes personal deterrence particularly important in this case.”

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10 thoughts on “Chloe Valentine manslaughter sentence appeal: Jailed mother cites ‘trauma’ for missing court

  1. Tragic accident…NOT she hated having responsibility of her daughter in my view. That’s ok, a crap mum fine, hand her over to someone who will care about her.

    Don’t plot accidental death schemes as if trying to hide the fact you have a overdue video and don’t want to pay the fine. Brings a tear to my eye seeing her don’t give a toss face in the media, almost like all this fuss has ruined her day

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  2. I cant believe how these 2 scumbag sadistic child killers were able to walk around before their sentencing and nobody knee capped them it seems as though absolutely nobody cared enough for this child even after her tragic death. I hope they get their right wack inside thats all I can hope for as they certainly didnt outside and as for Brian Deegan you peice of shit saying the sadistic killer Polkinghorne. ( omg what a name)is unwell the poor bitch what a low hustler you are is this how you pay your bills.This is reminicent of the Keisha Abraham murder a pair of misfit illbred scumbags.The DDP do need to step up get some guts and increase their sentence. So much for family first and helping children at risk. Stuff your yellow ribbon thats not good enough.

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    • Before u go off half cocked attacking the wrong people Brian Deegan is only doing his job, u see everybody in this country is entltled to a legal defence.weather u like it or not. if he doesn’t defend a client to the best of his ability he can bought up to the legal practitioners board,and lose his license to practice.he knows the law as he was a Magistrate for many years.he knows what it’s like to lose a child, his son was killed in the Tsarmi in Phuket a few years back. No I don’t know him,but I think it’s unfair to attack him.As for they should have been knee-caped no body knew the circumstances of the case till after the trial. OK.i lets hope she never has kids again she don’t deserve them,.crash the bike once but 4 times incredible.dim witted brain dead moron.or a callous mongrel.

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  3. And tell me what you have just done attacked me for my opinion dont make me sick I dont give a rats a…. about what you think.

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  4. I dont need a lecture on how the law works Im well aware that someone has to do the dirty work that doesnt make it fair or right its a known fact that certain laws here are totally ineffective and outdated.Slummy mummy doesnt feel well enough to face the court so she has a choice not to be present she should have been dragged in by her hair.

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    • ok I just pointed out calling the Lawyer a piece of shit [unfair] A lawyer once told me he’ had a case coming up [incest] and he said he hopes he loses it ,but [quote] [everybody deserves a defence to the best of his ability] if the judge picks up on him not trying he’ll refer him to the bar association and get him disbarred. he did get disbarred years later because a case went against his grain so to speak. damned if u do, damned if u don’t.

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  5. They only worry about drug dealers in this country if anything happens to them here or overseas.
    They never care about children. Look how many alleged accidents have happened to children and the minute the Police arrive it is reported they say tragic accident no suspicious circumstances preparing a report for the Coroner. This is done in an instant when a child falls out of a window that can hardly walk, drowns in a pool, plays on a railway line, pram goes onto railway line or in river or killed in a driveway leave them in car to die and go to work just say you forgot.
    Kill them in a school crossing or zone when breaking the law ask for the matter to be dropped and you want it dealt with under Section 32 of the Mental Health Act. Just tell Police you will not go into Court.

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  6. Suspicious how true that is even on the news most of it is about drug busts and hauls children are certainly swept under the carpet alot of the murders committed on children are supressed and kept from the general public except when a child is missing the family want the public to know. Great work Robbo exposing some of these evil bastards I bet most of the population are unaware of what horrible things happen to children in this country what makes me angry is it shouldnt get to the stage it does when the child dies a cruel vicious death.

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