Tanya St-Arnaud faces man in court accused of throwing acid at her face
Published Monday, February 18, 2013 8:21PM EST
Last Updated Monday, February 18, 2013 10:28PM EST
MONTREAL—In Longueuil, a preliminary hearing is underway for 27- year-old Nikolas Stefanatos. He is accused of throwing acid in his girlfriend's face.
Tanya St-Arnaud suffered major burns to 20 per cent of her body. On Monday, she confronted the man who allegedly attacked her for the first time.
St-Arnaud usually wears a wig and heavy make-up. But as she came face-to-face with the man she says forever changed her appearance, there was no hiding the deep scars, burns and missing patches of hair.
“I wanted to show everybody, not hide it,” she said after Monday’s court appearance.
Police say last August, Stefanatos doused St-Arnaud with acid after they had an argument. A publication ban prevents reporting of Monday's testimony. However, CTV Montreal can confirm that St-Arnaud testified about the event as Stefanatos sat in the prisoner’s box. He refused to look at her.
“To see him again, my stomach turned,” said St-Arnaud.
The woman is now trying to rebuild her life and she's getting some big-time help. American talk show host, Anderson Cooper arranged to have a world leader in scar correction work on her.
“I'm very blessed, this is the beginning and not the end,” she said of the surgery.
But there are also other scars, emotional ones, and the St-Arnaud family sis dealing with those as well.
“I said to Tanya, life is going to take care of him,” said her mother, Linda St-Arnaud.
The woman hopes to one day be able to forgive her attacker, but she's still far from there.
The preliminary hearing will continue on Tuesday to determine whether the man who allegedly attacked Tanya St-Arnaud will stand trial for three counts of assault.