Would a father just get house arrest?
There's an article in today's National Post about an extremely abusive mother who sadistically beat her children for nearly 20 years. Her punishment: 2 years house arrest.
In court they [her three children] testified to daily abuse from as early as they can remember until their mid-teens.
They said their mother once put their heads in a vice, routinely locked them in a cupboard for hours, pushed them down the stairs, fed them inedible meals or not at all, abandoned them in parks for entire days without adequate clothing, and followed them to school to ridicule them in front of their peers.
If they cried, their mother would straddle their chests and cover their mouths and noses so they couldn't breathe.