Edmonton duo found guilty of abusing girl, 4

A young Edmonton mother and her former boyfriend were found guilty Monday of abusing her four-year-old daughter.

A young Edmontonmother and her former boyfriend were foundguilty Monday of abusingher four-year-old daughter.

Justice Darlene Acton ruled the girl's mother and her former boyfriend Darcy Bannert, 25,were guilty of common assault after grabbing, punching and pushing the small child on a regular basis.

The mother was also found guilty of causing a child to need protective care, but three other charges againsther were dismissed. Shecan't be named to protect the identity of the child.

Acton was much harder on Bannert,finding him guilty on nine of 11 charges, two of them related to sexual abuse. As the details of the sexual assault were read out, the girl's mother sat in the prisoner's box covering her face with her hands.

In handing down her decision, Acton said Bannert was "king of this castle" and "ruled over this house with an iron fist."

Court hear that the little girl was deprived of water, repeatedly hit and handcuffed to furniture as a punishment, and sexually assaulted by Bannert.

Prosecutors described the home as a "house of horrors," but defence lawyers argued that while the couple may have gone overboard in disciplining the child, they did not abuse her.

The little girl is in foster care and receiving psychological counselling.

The pair will be sentenced next month.

With files from Canadian Press