The violent history of Aaron Archer has been revealed at his sentencing at the High Court in Auckland today.
The 31-year-old has been sentenced to seven years and three months for the manslaughter of his former girlfriend's two-year-old daughter, Ariah Roberts in Mangawhai during 2018.
The injuries happened while Ariah's mother, his then-girlfriend, was out for 15 minutes buying spinach from the local store.
Archer claimed he had been swinging the toddler around playfully when he lost grip and she hit her head on the wall.
His backstory was read out in court by Justice Whata.
The judge claimed the man was a drug user with a violent streak who consumed cannabis the day the two-year-old died.
The court heard Archer had three previous convictions for family violence and common assault.
Both his parents had suffered from drug addiction, his father was imprisoned on two occasions and his mother spent a year on remand when he was ten-years-old.
Justice Whata considered what he described as Archer's 'difficult and unstable upbringing.'
"You witnessed so much violent behaviour when you were young, you thought it was normal," said Whata.
But Archer's lawyer Ron Mansfield said the man is deeply remorseful.
"He has always accepted personal or moral responsibility for what occurred, from the very start," said Mansfield.
Justice Whata said while Archer may be sorry Ariah died, he continues to deny any intentional harm.
Archer has been sentenced to seven years and three months but will be eligible for parole in just over three and a half.