Fiancé’s brother ‘melted woman’s freckles off’ with boiled water in row over rat
A woman was attacked by her soon-to-be brother-in-law using water so hot it "melted off" her freckles – all because of a rat.
Charlotte Foster, 29, suffered first and second degree burns because of her fiancé's brother Ben Queen, 28.
The bizarre row started when Charlotte texted Ben – a fellow rat owner – for some advice about her pet rat Ruby following a trip to the vet.
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Ben became enraged over the fact that the rat had been given allergy medication for breathing problems, and the pair went back and forth over messages.
Charlotte then went to his house that day to demand an apology. Another argument ensued, this time ending in Ben shouting "take this you b****" before chucking boiling water at the mum-of-one, reports the Mirror.
She escaped and ended up at Cumberland Infirmary, Carlisle, with severe burns to her head, neck and shoulders.
Ben was arrested the same day and released on bail.
On February 9 he was handed a 21-month jail sentence as well as a five-year restraining order after pleading guilty to causing grievous bodily harm.
Charlotte said: "It all happened so fast. I could see that Ben was getting wound up after his coffee cup has been spilt, so I move out of the way and that's when he snapped.
"All of a sudden, I felt this scorching sensation on my head, ears and neck with Ben towering the kettle over me. He continude to pour the water for a minute as I screamed for him to stop – I've never felt pain like that.
"The metal tip of the kettle was literally poking into my scalp as he poured it. I tried to move away but he then put the kettle on my chest and then the back of my neck.
"The physical damage was horrendous and the pain left me wanting to end it all. It was heart-breaking for my son to see me. I watched as my freckles died and literally fell off my face as my skin melted away."
Charlotte is a full-time carer who looks after her fiancé, Ben's brother Sam.
She described her relationship with the Queen family as ''close knit'' before the attack – with Ben and her even working at the same B&M store in 2020.
Three days after she arrived at Cumberland Infirmary, Charlotte was transferred to Newcastle's Royal Victoria Infirmary for specialist treatment.
Over the course of the week she made the trip from Carlisle to the burns unit and required weekly check-ups thereafter as well as strong pain medication.
Charlotte said: "I'd just cry because it hurt so much. My hair would stick to my ear that had blistered all over and my face had puffed up completely.
"My son would say I still looked beautiful but I could see that he was scared of my injuries. I was horrified when I looked in the mirror as my freckles had started changing colour.
"Within the first month, they turned from brown to black and fell off. My partner Sam would be there having to clean them up as I just cried."
Charlotte said she still gets nightmares and sometimes flinches when turning the kettle on, but hopes speaking out will show other burns victims "there's hope and it will get better with time".
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