Surprise guilty plea for acid attack that scarred Tanya St-Arnauld
Published Thursday, November 13, 2014 12:47PM EST
Last Updated Thursday, November 13, 2014 6:27PM EST
It’s been two years since Tanya St-Arnauld was viciously attacked by her then-boyfriend, sprayed with acid after they got in a fight.
The South Shore woman sat down for an interview with CTV News after a court appearance in which her ex Nikolas Stefanatos entered a surprise guilty plea to charges of aggravated assault.
The plea comes three weeks before his trial was to begin.
St-Arnauld suffered horrible third-degree burns to her face, head, her arms and her torso and back.
She was placed in a medically-induced coma for more than a week and has since undergone multiple skin grafts and is still undergoing surgery to correct what happened to her.
In court Thursday, Stefanatos said he was sorry for what he did, expressed his love for St-Arnauld, and said he wanted to avoid causing St-Arnauld and her family further pain.
St-Arnauld says his admission of guilt is welcome, but his apology was needless.
“I don't need any apologies, I don’t need anything, just plead guilty and move on from there. There's no consoling me with words,” she said.
St-Arnauld took the stand to explain that she is still in pain from the attack, and will always have deep physical scars.
She said she is just over 30 years old, with the skin of a 70-year-old.
A U.S. talk-show offered the young woman to pay for some of her treatments in a clinic in Florida, an opportunity she says she is grateful for.
St-Arnauld is rebuilding her life and learning to live with her new body, but the scars remain, she said.
“In December I'm going for a head operation to try to get rid of some scars again, and give me less sensitivity. It’s a work in progress, as they say.”
Stefanatos has already spent two-and-a-half years in custody while awaiting trial.
The maximum sentence for aggravated assault is 14 years in prison.
The prosecution and defence indicated they will make a joint suggestion on a sentence when Stefanatos appears for sentencing arguments on Dec. 3, 2014.
But St-Arnauld said she isn't concerned about what sentence Stefanatos will receive.
“To be honest with you it won't change anything. Two years, 20 years, life, I'm not going to get back what I lost. Never.”