Man jailed for life for murdering five-year-old child

Marvyn Iheanacho battered his girlfriend's five-year-old son to death for losing a shoe

Man jailed for life for murdering five-year-old child

Marvyn Iheanacho will serve a minimum of 18 years in prison

A man who battered his girlfriend's five-year-old son to death for losing a shoe has been jailed for life.

Stepfather Marvyn Iheanacho will serve a minimum term of at least 18 years in prison for the murder of Alex Malcolm, after he killed the child in a brutal attack.

The 39-year-old flew into a rage at Mountsfield Park in Catford, south-east London, on 20th November last year, where witnesses heard a man screaming about the loss of a shoe.

Sentencing him at Woolwich Crown Court on Tuesday, Judge Mark Dennis QC told Iheanacho he had a "deeply entrenched character flaw" that leads him to overreact and lose his temper.

Alex, whose mother Lilya Breha was in a relationship with Iheanacho, suffered fatal head and stomach injuries and died in hospital two days after the attack.

A fearful child was heard saying "sorry" before loud banging at the park, after which Alex's head, neck and body were covered in bruises.

Undated file photo of one of Alex Malcolm's shoes in Mountsfield Park, Catford, London. Image: London Metropolitan Police

His killer carried his unconscious body to a minicab office and then took him to Ms Breha's flat, despite the nearest hospital being just five minutes' walk away.

Iheanacho, from Hounslow, west London, then attacked his girlfriend when she tried to call an ambulance for her son.

She eventually managed to grab the phone as she noticed Alex growing cold, turning blue and having stopped breathing.

Doctors at Lewisham Hospital tried to resuscitate Alex, but he was transferred to King's College Hospital after a scan revealed severe brain swelling.

He was pronounced dead following an unsuccessful operation on 22 November.

Police investigating the murder later found one of Alex's shoes in the play area of the park.