Boy poured bleach on woman in restaurant

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The Independent Online

A teenager poured bleach over a woman who had earlier asked him to be quiet in a cinema during a Harry Potter movie, a court heard.

Annette Warden, 46, was "terrified" when a 16-year-old boy walked up to her in a busy restaurant and squirted the liquid over her head as she was having a meal with her husband and two children on 26 July.

Leeds Crown Court was told how the family had earlier been watching Harry Potter And The Half Blood Prince at the Vue cinema in Leeds, when they were disturbed by a group of youths.

A jury was told how Mrs Warden confronted the noisy teenagers and asked them to be quiet after their phones kept going off, before calling for a member of staff.

Later, as the family went ate at a nearby Frankie and Benny's restaurant the defendant, who had gone to a service station and bought a bottle of Domestos, squirted the liquid onto the top of Mrs Warden's head, the court heard.

The liquid ran onto her face and she had to be treated with saline solution at hospital, although she was not seriously injured. Some bleach also hit her husband and children.

In a statement read to the court, Mrs Warden said: "It [the bleach] kept coming and fell all down the right side of my face and into my eyes.

"I didn't know what it was at first. Then I smelt bleach and my eyes started stinging."

In her statement she said she was "terrified and at the same time scared for my children".

The jury was told how the 16-year-old has admitted causing Mrs Walden actual bodily harm but he denies the more serious charge of attempting to cause grievous bodily harm with intent.

Giving evidence, the defendant told the jury that he only wanted to "show up" Mrs Warden and said he did not realise the bleach could seriously injure her.

The teenager said he was angry with her after he left the cinema but accepted he and his friends had been "messing about".

He said he went to the service station intending to buy eggs, but when he could not find any he bought the bleach instead because it had a top that meant it would squirt.

The trial continues.