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Yob laughed as he gave girl, 3, cigs; 18-MONTH SENTENCE FOR MAN.


A YOB gave a three-yearold girl cigarettes to smoke then laughed as she was filmed inhaling the toxic fumes.

Graeme Conroy gave the tot at least five cigarettes then had another child film the sickening scene on a video camera.

Conroy, 31, who claimed the stunt was funny, is today starting an 18-month prison sentence for child cruelty.

As reported in later editions of last night's Chronicle, Newcastle Crown Court heard Conroy had claimed he had also given the

Jailing him, Judge David Wood said: "You have completely disregarded her safety and endangered her.

"You evidently thought it would be funny if she was allowed to smoke the cigarette and you took a video of what was going on.

OUR STORY: Yesterday's "I expect you realise now it was not funny at all, that sort of conduct could be very damaging to a child's health."

Conroy, of Blyth Terrace, Ashington, had given the cigarettes to the three-year-old at a house in Gateshead in February.

While the three-year-old smoked the cigarettes he got a 14-year-old girl to film it.

Another youngster, who saw what was going on, told police in a statement: "She was inhaling it and everything. It looked like she had smoked before because she was inhaling and knew what to do.

"Graeme did not tell her what to do, she just knew what to do."

The court heard the child had been tested for cannabis after Conroy's claims he had given her the drug. Tony Glover, prosecuting, said: "There was the possibility that cannabis was involved, the defendant claimed he had allowed her to smoke cannabis.

"That was a late edition.

matter of great concern but tests carried out on her hair showed there was no evidence she had taken cannabis." The court heard the toxins in cigarettes are particularly harmful to children and when examined the youngster had a wheezy chest.

Jane Foley, defending, said: "He believed it was a bit of a joke but clearly it was not funny.

"Anyone hearing the circumstances of the offence would be appalled to hear a three-year-old was permitted to smoke a cigarette."


OUR STORY: Yesterday's late edition.
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Oct 16, 2009
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