CORNWALL - A judge has ruled that a Cornwall man who killed a five-year-old girl will serve 18 years in prison before he can apply for parole.

Shane Haley, 23, pleaded guilty to second-degree murder earlier this year.

He stabbed Alissa Martin Travers multiple times as she slept in her mother's bed at their Cumberland Street home in 2008.

Murder carries a life sentence but lawyers laid out their case two weeks ago on when Haley should be able to apply for parole.

The Crown wanted 20 years but the defence wanted 15.

Court had previously been told an intoxicated Haley broke into the home hoping to have an encounter with Alissa's mother, with whom he had a previous relationship, but he found the little girl.

Court was told Alissa screamed and Haley attacked, stabbing her several times.