Even as her young family member cried for help, Christina Sykora did nothing to stop her boyfriend from raping the child.
Instead, she watched.
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The 40-year-old Aurora woman was sentenced Thursday to 18 years in prison for allowing the attack to happen inside her father's Lombard home.
"I hope you can understand the seriousness of what you did," DuPage County Judge George Bakalis said. "I can't begin to think of the effect this had on (the victim). It was your responsibility to protect her."
It was just one instance of abuse the girl suffered at the hands of Sykora's boyfriend, Sabino Martinez, 67, in 2004 and 2005, when the victim was about 8-years-old, prosecutors said.
Sykora offered the child in place of herself after Martinez propositioned her for sex, Assistant State's Attorney Anne Therieau said. The only condition was Sykora be allowed to watch.
After undressing the child and placing her on a bed, Sykora locked the door and allowed Martinez to commit rape as the victim "cried out to her," prosecutors said. "The defendant told her to just do it," Therieau said in court. "The defendant ultimately admitted she was sexually aroused during this attack."
The assault ended abruptly when another family member returned home.
Martinez, a handyman who often worked for Sykora's parents, pleaded guilty in August to predatory criminal sexual assault of a child and also was sentenced to 18 years.
Sykora, who was said to have low intelligence and a history of mental illness, was found unfit for trial last year. Her fitness was restored after she was treated at a state mental health facility.
Bakalis questioned Sykora for several minutes Thursday about her understanding of her rights before accepting her guilty plea to permitting the sexual abuse of a child.
The judge also granted her request to recommend she receive drug treatment in prison.
"I really want to stay off the drugs because it's affected my life," Sykora said.
By law, she must serve at least 9 years.
State's Attorney Robert Berlin called the case "one of the most disturbing to come through my office in recent times."
"Words cannot describe the physical and emotional pain that this poor child endured, caused by the complete betrayal of a trusted relative," he said. "My heart goes out to her."