Savannah Brockhill and Frankie Smith will be sentenced on Wednesday for their roles in the killing of 16-month-old girl Star Hobson.

Savannah Brockhill, 28, was found guilty of murdering Star Hobson on September 22, 2020, in a brutal attack at Smith’s flat in Wesley Place, Keighley.

Frankie Smith, 20, was cleared of murder and manslaughter, but found guilty of causing or allowing the death of her daughter.

On Wednesday at Bradford Crown Court, the prosecution and each defendant’s legal representatives will make submissions on what they feel the most appropriate punishment for both women should be.

But what are the two women facing tomorrow when Mrs Justice Lambert delivers justice at 2pm?

Savannah Brockhill

For Brockhill, it is clear. The offence of murder carries a mandatory life sentence, she will get life in prison. However, it will be for Mrs Justice Lambert to determine what the minimum number of years should be for Brockhill to serve before she will even be considered for release.

The prosecution, no doubt, will call for a very lengthy minimum term. This case has echoes of the Arthur Labinjo-Hughes case in the West Midlands, where killer Emma Tustin was given a minimum of 29 years.

Her defence will ask for a shorter minimum term no doubt, but expect her minimum term to be of some length. But what it will be, that’s for more experienced, learned-in-the-law people to decide.

Frankie Smith

The case of Frankie Smith is slightly more nuanced. She was acquitted of the most serious charges, but was still found guilty of a very serious offence.

The maximum term for the offence, as per guidelines from the Sentencing Council, is 14 years in prison.

First, Mrs Justice Lambert must judge Smith’s culpability. The prosecution waved away claims of low intelligence for Smith, but her defence has relied on it.

It’s said she has an IQ of 70, is very immature and highly compliant. The court also heard much evidence that Smith herself was a long-suffering victim of domestic abuse and violence at the hands of Brockhill.

If her lawyer, Zafar Ali QC, can convince Mrs Justice Lambert of this, Smith would fall into medium or lesser culpability.

Lesser culpability is decided on: an offender’s substantially diminished responsibility due to immaturity, offender being a victim of domestic abuse/control linked to the offence, and a brief lapse of judgement in cases involving neglect.

Medium culpability involved use of significant force by the offender, multiple incidents of cruelty, and limited steps being taken to protect the victim.

The next step is harm. Harm is clear, it’s Category 1 – Death.

If she is judged to be of medium culpability, the starting point is five years, with a range of three to eight years in jail.

If she is judged to be of lesser culpability, the starting point is two years, with a range of one to four.

Smith has already spent more than 12 months in custody on remand. If time on remand is included in a sentence served, she is judged to have lesser culpability and the sentence handed down is towards the mid to lower range of the guidelines, Smith may walk free from court.

In the end however, this is all for Mrs Justice Lambert, not us, to decide.

Submissions will begin at 11am tomorrow. Mrs Justice Lambert will sentence Savannah Brockhill and Frankie Smith at 2pm.

You can follow the submissions and sentencing in our live blog which will be running tomorrow.

For full details on the Sentencing Council's guidelines around causing/allowing the death of a child, click here.