A 45-year-old man has today (Friday 14 February) been sentenced to four years in prison for gross negligence manslaughter, following the death of a two-year-old girl who fell from a balcony in Sheffield.
Robert Warner, from Shirehall Crescent, Lower Shiregreen, was found guilty by a majority verdict following a three-week trial at Sheffield Crown Court.
On 27 June 2012, two-year-old Ryaheen Banismuslem was playing with her family in the fourth storey garden area of the North Bank apartments in Willey Street, Sheffield, when she fell through a gap in the walkway barrier where a glass panel should have been.
A post mortem concluded Ryaheen died as a result of the injuries she sustained in the fall.
Detective Inspector Sean Bird, who lead the investigation, said: “This was a tragic incident which could so easily have been avoided. This has been a highly unusual investigation; in my 23 years of policing, I have never known a case like this.
“The guilty verdict of gross negligence manslaughter today will be of little comfort to Ryaheen’s family, but I hope that the decision allows them to move forward from this very painful chapter in their lives.
“I would like to pay tribute to Ryaheen’s family who have shown tremendous strength throughout this protracted investigation and to the team of dedicated officers and specialists who have worked tirelessly to bring this case to a conclusion.
“I would also like to thank the people who came forward throughout the course of this investigation to offer their help and support.”