A mother who was so drunk she did not realise her toddler had fallen out of an open window has been spared jail.

The woman, who can't be named to protect the identity of her daughter, pleaded guilty at Northampton Crown Court yesterday to allowing a child to come to injury while being in charge of them.

She was handed a 10-month prison sentence, suspended for 18 months.

Police say the woman was four times the legal limit for drinking and driving, with a breathalyser reading of 127 micrograms of alcohol per 100ml of blood. The legal limit is 35 micrograms.

Her daughter had clambered up to an open window her mother used for smoking.

The toddler fell 20 feet (six metres) onto the tarmac outside their home in Northampton.

Northamptonshire. Crown Court Northampton
The woman was spared jail but got a dressing down from the judge

A neighbour heard the child screaming and alerted the mother, who the court heard appeared “oblivious” to what had happened.

She suffered severe bruising and a fractured eye socket and was rushed to hospital.

Prosecutor Andrew Peet said the girl was "very lucky" not to have suffered more serious injuries.

A prosecutor told the court: "Any sober and responsible adult would never let their child go anywhere near that window.

"The reality is this defendant was so drunk she didn't even realise her baby had done what she did."

Judge Rupert Mayo, when passing sentence, said: "Because of your lack of care and because you chose to drink, she [the daughter] was able to fall from a first-floor window.

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Police said the woman was four times over the legal limit for drinking alcohol and driving

"If you ever need a reminder of what you did to your child, ask your barrister for the photos of her injuries attached to the case files.

"They would be deeply shocking to any parent."

The woman was also ordered to complete 30 days of rehabilitation work and was said to be "deeply remorseful" for her actions.

The toddler reportedly did not have a cot or a bed at the property.

Detective Constable Gill Craddock, of Northamptonshire Police, said: "This was a truly appalling case of neglect where a mother was so intoxicated she failed to protect her own child from very serious injury.

"Her irresponsibility has had devastating consequences for her child and I hope this sends out a warning to any parent who gets drunk while in charge of a child."