Andrew Partington, 28, had pleaded guilty to manslaughter at an earlier hearing in Manchester Crown Court, admitting he cut the gas pipes to his home in a drunken rage after his girlfriend walked out with their children, The Independent reported. In the morning, he had a change of heart and opened the windows but lit a cigarette before the gas had dissipated.
Jamie Heaton, 2, was killed by the blast. Partington had burns over 40 percent of his body and a broken back.
"The resulting scene of the devastation resembled a bomb site and in some senses it was," Mr. Justice Nicholas Hamblen said. "It was in effect a bomb that you created and detonated."
Kenny and Michelle Heaton, who lived next door to Partington in Oldham, described Jamie as a "beautiful, healthy, loving little boy."
"We often wondered what the future would hold for Jamie and his achievements," they said in a statement. "His great-grandma said he was a genius. Unfortunately, we will never find out."
The night before the blast Partington, a father of six, sent his girlfriend several drunken text messages.
"Told you next time you leave, house goes up with me," he said in one. "You left your kids with no dad no home. Goodbye. Boom. Gas pipes cut. Already filled up. Boom."
McPhee, Cokas 'working on their marriage' after affair
Astronomers offer more expansive view of universe