Stepdad sentenced to life in prison in deadly beating of little girl

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Corey Daniels (Source: Maricopa County Superior Court) Corey Daniels (Source: Maricopa County Superior Court)
Corey Daniels (Source: Maricopa County Superior Court) Corey Daniels (Source: Maricopa County Superior Court)
Ambreatte Smith (Daniels) (Source: Maricopa County Superior Court) Ambreatte Smith (Daniels) (Source: Maricopa County Superior Court)
Ambreatte Smith (Daniels) (Source: Maricopa County Superior Court) Ambreatte Smith (Daniels) (Source: Maricopa County Superior Court)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

A Valley man has been sentenced to prison for the rest of his natural life for the murder of his 3-year-old stepdaughter in 2011.

Corey Daniels pleaded guilty to child abuse and first-degree murder in the death of the Ahwatukee girl.

[RELATED: Phoenix man admits beating step-daughter]

Back in September, the little girl's mother was sentenced to two years of probation for child abuse.

[RELATED: Mom of toddler allegedly beaten to death by stepdad sentenced to probation]

Investigators say Ambreatte Smith (Daniels) knew her husband was physically abusing her toddler daughter.

She was arrested in November 2011 after police said they found pictures of the girl's injuries on her cell phone.

The dates of the pictures ranged from Sept. 3 to Oct. 13, 2011.

Authorities say Corey Daniels was taking care of the child while his wife was at work on Oct. 27, 2011, and he allegedly beat the girl for not eating her dinner and talking back to him.

The girl died of her injuries the following day.

Authorities say an autopsy showed the child had multiple blunt-force trauma injuries and brain swelling.

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