That moment changed his life forever. The man at the door was not a delivery man but was, instead, a thug seeking revenge.
The man at the door, David Phillips, had mistakenly identified Christopheros’ home as the home of his intended victim. As Christopheros opened the door, Phillips said, “This is for you, mate,” as he threw sulfuric acid onto his face.
Christopheros, a husband and father to a 4-year-old, said his shirt immediately disintegrated from the acid. He was rushed to the hospital where doctors told his wife and his mother that he might not make it.
After enduring more than 10 surgeries to reconstruct 90 percent of his face, he is still suffering from the brutal attack. Because of scarring on his face, he has lost his eyelids multiple times.
Phillips pleaded guilty to the attack and was sentenced to life in prison. However, his sentence was reduced to 16 years with the possibility of parole after 8 years.
Christopheros and many other concerned citizens of the UK are standing up against the light punishment that Phillips and others like him are facing. In London, acid attacks have been increasing at an alarming rate, jumping from 261 in 2015 to 431 in 2016.
Adele Bellis suffered a similar attack, but the perpetrator was released from prison after only two years. Two cousins were doused with acid through a car window during a birthday celebration, and there were five acid attacks against delivery men in one night.
Christopheros believes that the easy accessibility and low cost is enough to ruin dozens of lives. It is available to anyone for purchase, making it easy for anyone to commit acts of violence or even widespread terrorism.
Thankfully, doctors have released new guidelines on how to help victims of acid attacks which includes having the victim remove doused clothing and washing him or her with water. In addition, the British government is now considering new legislation in light of the increased frequency in attacks.
The pain that Christopheros and many others have faced is difficult to imagine, and we hope that they all can make great strides in their recoveries. Hopefully their voices will be heard and better laws will be put in place to help future victims and prevent further attacks.
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