Jurors viewed graphic photos showing bruises and scratches all over a child's body several times this week during the trial for his mother, who was convicted Thursday of murder and child cruelty.
But when the mother, Jameshia Reid, stood before Judge Howard Simms for sentencing, the judge said he'd noticed that Reid hadn't looked at the pictures during the trial.
"If I had them in here, I'd put them up on these TV screens ... and I would make you stand there and look at them," he told her.
Reid's mother, father and stepfather each pleaded for mercy on Reid's behalf.
Reid also asked for leniency, saying it was hard for her to testify Wednesday and relive the day that her son, 3-year-old Jakarie, was rushed to the hospital May 22, 2013.
"I'm going to show you the same mercy you showed that little boy," Simms said. "As far as I can tell, that was zero."
Simms sentenced Reid to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
In his 30 years of working at the courthouse, Simms said Jakarie Reid's death was the worst case of child abuse he'd ever seen.
The child suffered "the worst beating that I have ever seen inflicted on a child. ... He was murdered. He was beaten to death. He was tortured to death," Simms told Reid as he sentenced her.
"I cannot imagine ... what he thought that day, the day before and the day before that. ... This was serial torture," he said.
Simms said the boy "never had a chance." He told Reid she "took it away from him" instead of giving him to one of her many supportive family members who could have given him "a shot."
"You killed him in about the worst way I've ever seen someone get killed," the judge said.
Speaking after the hearing, District Attorney David Cooke said he's been a prosecutor for 19 years.
"The reason I don't quit is because of people like (Reid) and to get justice for children like Jakarie," he said.
Prosecutors said Reid was fatally beating Jakarie while Reid's live-in girlfriend was on the phone with a natural gas company representative. The call was recorded, and jurors heard it multiple times during the trial, including once at their request during their deliberations.
Reid testified Wednesday that the child she was yelling at during the call was her younger daughter, not Jakarie.
During the four-day trial, neighbors testified that they saw Reid's girlfriend, Latonya Sanders, outside while hearing a woman yelling and a child crying inside the family's home in Macon's Pleasant Hill neighborhood.
Reid testified Wednesday that Sanders is the person who struck Jakarie in the head, causing his fatal brain injuries.
Testimony during the trial showed that Reid beat Jakarie with an aquarium fish net, a flip-flop and a broken clothes hanger.
"I didn't kill my son," Reid said after pleading with jurors. "Help me out and hear my story."
To contact writer Amy Leigh Womack, call 744-4398 or find her on Twitter@awomackmacon.