A British woman was arrested and charged with the murder of her elderly husband after she allegedly poured boiling sugar water over his body following a family argument. Corinna Smith, 59, is said to have attacked 81-year-old Michael Baines while he was asleep in bed at the home they shared on Highfield Road in Neston, Cheshire on the night of July 14, 2020, BBC News reports. His injuries were so severe that he later succumbed to them in hospital.
Smith denied killing her husband but was found guilty anyway. A jury at Chester Crown Court convicted Smith of the crime, believing that the woman, who acted as her husband’s carer, deliberately set out to harm the man after she had a fight with him and another family member earlier that same night.
Smith’s crime was heinous and cruel. According to the Crown Prosecution Service, Smith took a bucket from the garden just after midnight, boiled water in a kettle, and mixed it with sugar. She then poured the molten hot liquid over the man while he slept.
She knew what she’d done was horrific. CPS also said that following the attack, Smith ran to a neighbor’s house and frantically told them through tears: “I’ve hurt him, I’ve really hurt him bad… I think I’ve killed him.”
Police discovered the man in agony. When they arrived at the house, Baines was in extreme pain and had suffered extensive burns to more than a third of his body. After five weeks in the hospital, he passed away.
Smith claimed she’d “lost control.” However, CPS Mersey Cheshire’s Jayne Morris accused Smith of killing Baines in a “brutal and painful way” and said she was guilty of murder, not manslaughter. “Her actions were deliberate and considered. She was clearly upset about the dispute… but the evidence demonstrated that she was in control and acted in anger when she poured the lethal mixture over her husband and wanted to extract vengeance,” Morris said. Smith will be sentenced on July 9.