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Mom who superglued girl's hands to wall sentenced to 99 years

By Marice Richter

DALLAS (Reuters) - A Dallas woman who kicked and beat her 2-year-old daughter and superglued her hands to a wall of their apartment was sentenced to 99 years in prison on Friday.

"On September 7, 2011, you savagely beat your child to the edge of death," State District Judge Larry Mitchell said in sentencing 23-year-old Elizabeth Escalona. "For this you must be punished."

The mother of five pleaded guilty in July to felony injury to a child for the beating. The toddler was so badly injured she remained hospitalized in a coma for nearly a week.

During a week-long sentencing hearing, Escalona admitted on the witness stand to kicking and beating the girl. The attack was apparently prompted by toilet-training problems, according to The Dallas Morning News.

After beating the child, Escalona glued her hands to the wall of the family's apartment using the strong-bonding adhesive product, police said.

Escalona and her family had asked for a sentence of probation. Her attorney, Angie N'Duka, said she was the victim of a bad upbringing who is sorry for what she did and wants to turn her life around.

"This is way too harsh," N'Duka told reporters. "She is just a kid. She's only 23 years old. She's been a victim all her life."

N'Duka said she plans to appeal.

Escalona had been offered a plea deal of 45 years in prison but turned it down. Prosecutor Eren Price said the judge's sentence fit the crime.

"Elizabeth Escalona wasn't sorry for what she did," Price said in a statement. "Elizabeth Escalona felt sorry for herself. Those tears on the stand were for her and not for the toddler she tortured."

Escalona will not be eligible for parole for 30 years. Her children have been living with relatives.

(Editing by Corrie MacLaggan and Xavier Briand)

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