Bridget Kenneally, 49, was given a measly sentence of two years in prison
Trigger Warning: This story contains details of child abuse and neglect that readers may find disturbing
In a case of a modern-day Cinderalla, a woman forced her stepdaughter to eat vinegar, chili powder, mustard, and salt. In addition, she would beat her regularly and called her "Cora Ella." The horrific abuse that girl endured took place over a decade. Bridget Kenneally, 49, of Duncoran, Youghal, County Cork Ireland, forced Cora Desmond to a decade-long "torture" where she forced her to clean up after Kenneally and her children while using her as a "punching bag," reports CorkBeo. According to police, Kenneally has been jailed for two years for beating Desmond, now 21, with pokers, sticks of the vacuum cleaner, belts, and spatulas, after she pleaded guilty to one count of assault between October 1 and October 31, 2009.
A woman who treated her stepdaughter like a “modern-day Cinderella”, as well as beating her with a poker & force-feeding her chili powder, has been jailed for 2 years— Virgin Media News (@VirginMediaNews) November 17, 2020
Brave Cora Desmond has spoken out after years of torment@PaulByrne_1 #VMNews reports [Distressing details] pic.twitter.com/sYWE82Lh4E
According to the Mirror, Desmond, who was once found with over 50 bruises on her body, gave a rousing victim impact statement at a sentencing hearing in Cork Circuit Criminal Court. Standing in front of Judge Sean O'Donnabhain, Desmond detailed the abuse meted out to her between the ages of six and 16. She told the judge that her father who had full custody of her began a relationship with Kenneally when she was 5. Although Kenneally was said to be "nice and caring" during the initial months, she began to show her evil face later on. She said, "About six months into the 11-year relationship the horrific abuse began with a few slaps and punches but then gradually got worse. Throughout the years it became clear to me that I was nothing but a punching bag to Bridget."
Not enough.... So sad and brave girl ❣️— Debbie Buckley (@DebbieB44363524) November 17, 2020
The woman gave her own children freedom to do whatever they wanted, but Desmond and her sister weren't given the same privileges She said, "Her children could go hang out with friends of their choosing," she recounted. "My sister and myself were refused daily of the same freedom. Instead, we were confined to her residence to clean up after her and her children. Bridget gave me the name Cora Ella and told me I was just like Cinderella because I was the one who was not wanted or loved." Throughout the course of the abusive relationship, Desmond was forced to live a double life as she felt trapped at home while awaiting her next beating or punishment whilst putting on a cheerful disposition when she went to school. But over a period of time, she lost her self confidence.
2 years thats a joke!!— Annie72 (@5cd18c3b06294a2) November 17, 2020
"For eleven years she told me no one would believe me if I spoke out regarding the vile, sadistic, physical and mental torture she subjected me to. I was made to lie about my injuries and tell people I was just a clumsy child." She gave an instance where she had her finger broken but had to lie about it. She revealed, "One of the many lies I had to tell was how I broke my thumb. The real truth is she broke it. She twisted my hand so much that it actually snapped the bone. But that wasn't the worst of it. On one of the occasions I ended up in hospital I received a pretty bad beating to my head causing swelling to the right side of my head and face. She made me tell doctors that I hit my hit in Funderland which I attended two weeks prior."
Hopefully her new housemates give her a warm welcome in prison— Dublinbhoy (@Dublin_Dec) November 17, 2020
The victim who works at a supermarket said she was grateful for the importance her story was shown in the lead-up to the court battle and said her childhood involved mental and physical torture. "One of the recurring daily punishments - she would feed me excessive amounts of salt, pepper, mustard, chili powder, and vinegar. Since my departure from her care, I have long-lasting negative reactions to certain smells and tastes. It brings back memories and flashbacks of the torture she put me through." The abuse didn't end there as the stepmother even threatened to kill her if she told anyone about the abuse. As a result, Desmond suffers from depression and is afraid to venture out on her own. She said: "You (Bridget) robbed me of my carefree childhood that every child is entitled to. I now understand that none of it was my fault and I didn't deserve any of it though that is what she made me believe."
Kenneally was interviewed informally in 2016 and was arrested in 2017 after a complaint had been made against her. She made no admissions to the police but eventually entered a guilty plea in the case.