The little girl was in hospital for 15 days and was left with no permanent physical injury.
'She has been adversely affected as a result of the offending and the devastating effect your actions had,' Judge Tony Moynihan said.
'She is a brave little girl who is making good progress in her current safe environment.'
After pleading guilty, James was sentenced to six years in jail on July 25.
But, even though he already had a previous conviction for assaulting a three-year-old, he was given immediate parole eligibility due to the almost two years he'd already served behind bars.
An online petition on Change.org has since labelled the sentence 'grossly inadequate' and has called for the Department of Public Prosecutions to lodge an appeal.
'Justice for the little girl,' one petition supporter commented. 'This madness must stop. Throw away the key,' wrote another.