Two people jailed for unprovoked acid attack
Two people have been jailed for an unprovoked acid attack that left a man with serious chemical burns.
Ashley Russell (30), and Christina Storey (32), received a combined sentence of 25 years for the acid attack on Darren Pidgeon.
The 29-year-old spent 24 days in hospital following a vicious acid attack which required skin grafts to repair third degree burns caused by "extreme" acid.
The pair denied throwing the corrosive fluid at Mr Pidgeon with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, but were later found guilty by a jury at Basildon Crown Court on Thursday.
The eight-day-trial resulted in a 17 year sentence for Russell, while Storey was sentenced to eight years.
Detective Inspector Chris Rose said: "I am pleased that the jury have found Russell and Storey guilty of this appalling and unprovoked attack.
"This has been a long and difficult investigation for Darren and his family and I hope that this verdict can provide them with an element of closure and the knowledge that justice has been done.
"It should also send a message to anyone considering carrying out this type of crime that they will be found and put before the courts."
Prosecutors heard, Mr Pidgeon was attacked at around 11.20pm on June 3rd 2014.
“He had stopped at traffic lights when he noticed a red Rover, driven by Storey, pulling alongside him.
“As he pulled off the Rover drove in front of him as the victim continued south, although it was not a "near miss"
Mr Pidgeon then turned into a cul-de-sac to turn around, and as he went to reverse, saw a car pull in behind him.
A passenger of the red car then got out of the passenger door and ran round to Mr Pidgeon's door, where he had the window wound down, and he said words to the effect of 'have you got a problem?'.
Russell then sprayed the victim in the face and also punched him, residents heard the shouting and revs of a car.
Mr Pidgeon knocked on a door, prompting two calls to police at around 11:20pm.