Killer ‘scalded in prison attack’
A CONVICTED killer has told a court how she had boiling water thrown over her face and neck by an inmate at a Derbyshire prison.
Josie Hollis said she went into Natalie Roberts’ cell at HMP Foston Hall to ask her why she had just called out “murderer”.
As she did so, Miss Hollis said she saw Roberts, 35, clutching a just-boiled kettle.
Miss Hollis said: “I knew what was coming so I went to turn away but she splashed the left side of my face with the water.
“I now have permanent nerve damage and I am on a high dose of medication. I have real bad anxiety, scared, I look over my shoulder constantly. I have permanent scarring down my back, neck and chest.”
Mark Knowles, prosecuting at Derby Crown Court, said the incident took place in C-wing at HMP Foston on July 27, 2017.
Miss Hollis was awaiting trial for the murder of 23-year-old Jordan Hill who died after an attack in the hallway of his flat in Sheffield,on March 23, 2017.
That trial, in February, saw 32-year-old Bradley Onfroy found guilty of murder and robbery following a trial at Sheffield Crown Court. He was given a minimum 33 years.
Miss Hollis, 24, pleaded guilty to manslaughter and robbery at a previous hearing and was jailed for 15 years.
She said in the build-up to the kettle incident that Roberts, of Handsworth, Birmingham, had “constantly abused” her in areas such as the canteen. She said moments before it happened she had been supporting another inmate who was being verbally abused by a third prisoner.
It was then that she claims Roberts called out “murderer”.
Mr Knowles said: “You were not convicted of murder, it was manslaughter.”
Miss Hollis said: “Correct, I was confused so I approached Natalie to ask her what she was on about.
“I walked into the doorway of her cell and saw she had a kettle in one hand and a cup in the other. The kettle lid was up.”
Roberts denies one charge of causing grievous bodily harm with intent. The jury was told she will tell them Miss Hollis splashed herself with the boiling water as the pair struggled in her cell with the kettle.
Devon Small, in cross-examination, said to Miss Hollis: “You were angry when you went into that cell.”
She replied: “I was not angry, I was confused.”
He said: “You walked in, grabbed the kettle, Natalie Roberts tried to put her hands on it, you pulled it violently and that is how water splashed on you.”
Miss Hollis replied: “That’s not correct.”
A statement made by Sharon Fisher, the governor of HMP Foston Hall, was read to the jury. She said she overheard Roberts shouting: ‘I should have killed her.’”
lthe trial was due to reach a verdict on Friday afternoon, as we went to press.