Mother in prison for drinking, while daughter is dying on the sofa.


A mother who left her teenage daughter to die alone on her sofa while she went drinking was taken to prison. Robyn Goldie, 13, fell ill with peritonitis after suffering a stomach ulcer in July 2018 and died because her mother, Sharon Goldie, failed to seek medical attention.

In the week before her death, Robyn Goldie reported feeling unwell and on July 24 she was pale and trembling. She had said she needed an ambulance, but her mother refused. She also declined a friend’s offer to take Robyn to the hospital in a cab, the court was told.

Robyn died on July 26. The day before she was in the garden and asked a neighbor to help her get an ambulance and said she could not breathe, but her mother intervened and brought her back to the house. The judge, Lord Beckett, sentenced Goldie to three years and six months in prison, as Lord Beckett told her: “Your daughter was in pain that afternoon, you gave her a painkiller and went to the pub.

“When you got home, she had collapsed on the sofa, but you and your friend went out into the garden to have a drink because the weather was fine. An hour later, she was dead.”

Goldie, 45, of Wishaw in North Lanarkshire, Scotland, pleaded guilty in an earlier trial to the wilful abuse and neglect of her daughter over the period of one year from July 2017 to July 2018. She admitted to not providing her daughter with adequate food, clothing or heating, beating her and allowing her to smoke cannabis and drink alcohol. She also pleaded guilty to exposing Robyn to unsanitary living conditions, including cat urine and cat feces, which caused her to get fleas.

At her conviction before the Edinburgh Sheriff’s Court, Lord Beckett told Goldie that she had shown “considerable cruelty over a long period of time” and that there was no alternative to imprisonment.

The judge said: “Even if your daughter could sometimes be challenging and difficult, she was subjected to a terrible ordeal of neglect and abuse by you over a long period of time. You had enough money to feed your daughter, but you decided against it and bought alcohol and cannabis, which you gave to your daughter instead of proper nutrition.

The prosecution accepted Goldie’s plea of not guilty to a charge of involuntary manslaughter. The court was informed that at the age of nine years, the mother suffered a severe craniocerebral trauma that affected her cognitively and physically and impaired her ability to cope with the years.

Representing Goldie, attorney Marco Guarino said: “This is a lady who clearly has difficulties of both a mental and physical nature, which affects her ability to see things and the consequences of actions or omissions, and I think that in this case this is the reason for her guilt. There is no punishment that this court can impose that is greater than what she is suffering right now as a result of her actions, namely the death of her child”.

He told the court that Goldie’s 25-year-old daughter had recently died in tragic circumstances in China and that she had another child, a 23-year-old son.


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