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Woman acquitted of child cruelty conviction

The Court of Appeal on Wednesday overturned the child cruelty conviction of social media personality Alesha “Car Wash” McNeil.

McNeil, 23, of Third Street, The Grove, pleaded guilty to cruelty to children, at her arraignment before Deputy Chief Magistrate Andrew Forbes on June 15.

He sentenced her to three months in prison. She was freed on bail, pending appeal on July 7.

At the appeal hearing, prosecution lawyers Vernal Collie and Kendall Carroll conceded that the judge erred by accepting McNeil’s plea and that the sentence was unduly harsh.

McNeil was unrepresented when she appeared before Forbes.

In explaining her actions, McNeil claimed that the child’s father gave her permission to discipline him.

McNeil said that she was teaching the boy “how to read and write”.

The child’s mother filed a police complaint when she discovered marks on her son’s back and stomach on June 5, the prosecutor, Sergeant Lincoln McKenzie, told the court.

The juvenile told his mother that McNeil caused the injuries on June 4, the court heard.

When interviewed by police, McNeil told the officers that she had beaten the child with a belt, but his father had caused the injuries.

Wayne Munroe, QC, Ryszard Humes and Bjorn Ferguson represented McNeil at the appeal.

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