Last April, an Oklahoma woman was sentenced to three consecutive life sentences for running what prosecutors called a “house of horrors”. Geneva S. Robinson, a 51-year old resident of Oklahoma, pleaded guilty to five charges of child abuse. Her 33-year old boyfriend and co-defendant, Joshua Granger, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for helping Robinson severely abuse her granddaughter. For several months in 2014, the little girl, whose name has been withheld, and her three other siblings lived with Robinson after their parents divorced.
Prosecutors stated that Robinson had been assaulting her granddaughter for more than year, reported Yahoo.com. The scope of Robinson’s abuse included beating her granddaughter with a rolling pin, hitting her in the face, burning the little girl with cigarettes, and cutting her hair while she slept. The prosecutors also said that Robinson would often assume the persona of “Nelda the Witch”, during which Granger dressed up as a demon named “Coogro”.
While she was being sentenced, prosecutors showed the court footage of Robinson as “Nelda” tormenting her granddaughter. In the cellphone video allegedly taken by one of Robinson’s adult children, Robinson could be seen dressed in black, her hands painted green, and wearing a wig and what appeared to be a mask. According to NewsOK.com, Granger could be heard saying: “Grandma’s sick because of you. You go with the witch.”
The little girl cried out: “I promise, witch. I promise.”
Robinson then said: “You lie, you lie, you lie, little girl.”
In response, her granddaughter said: “I promise, witch. I won’t do mean to Grandma. I won’t hit Grandma. I won’t be mean.”
“Give me a fork and a knife,” Robinson responded. The prosecutors stated that this phrase is related to a lie Robinson told the little girl about witches eating bad children.
Throughout the video, Robinson can be seen roughly handling the little girl, at one point grabbing the front of her shirt. Robinson was also seen dragging her granddaughter across the floor.
“What she did was horrific and what she did will forever impact this child and her siblings,” Assistant District Attorney (ADA) Merydith Easter said during sentencing. “She deserves the same amount of mercy that she showed this child, and that’s none.”
Before she announced her verdict, Oklahoma County District Judge Michele McElwee held up two photos of the victim. One photo showed the victim at five years of age, with a big smile, a head full of hair, and “sparkling eyes”. The second photo was of the bruised and blistered victim with a buzz cut and a despondent expression. Judge McElwee then told Robinson: “You know what died? Those sparkling eyes from an innocent girl.”
According to People.com, the police first learned of the abuse after receiving a call from workers at the Griffin Memorial Hospital in Norman. Okla. The workers reported that Robinson attempted to have her granddaughter committed, saying she “couldn’t control the girl.”As revealed in court documents, doctors who looked at the granddaughter noticed that there were bruises and burns all over her malnourished body. Cuts and abrasions marked her ankles, giving the impression that she had been shackled.
Prosecutors mentioned that Robinson’s adult children had also been abused by “Nelda”, including the child’s father. He said that he no longer believed Robinson was doing the “Nelda thing” and assumed Robinson was getting help for her issues. It is currently unknown who has custody of the child.