An Ethiopian immigrant, Bekre Abdela was charged with the attempted murder of a young Maryland woman. Bekre’s weapon of choice was acid. This left his roommate’s face scarred for life. The suspect is said to have used sulphuric acid on the woman’s face. As a result, the woman suffered first degree burns both to her face and neck.
The charges against Bekre also include reckless endangerment and assault. Police investigations are still on-going to establish the motive behind this cruel act. The patient was put in a medically induced coma in order to treat the burns.
According to his profile information on Facebook, Bekre holds a degree in chemical engineering. It is, therefore, no surprise that he chose to use sulphuric acid. The detectives who responded to the scene reported that there was a trail of blood in the house. Boxes of handgun ammunitions were also found raising suspicions as to what other criminal activities the attacker was engaged in.
There has been an exponential growth in the use of acid to perpetrate crimes. These crimes have been more prevalent in the UK. Statistics show that thousands have been killed, maimed, and burned by acid attacks, especially in the last 5 years. Acid has been used in place of guns which are harder to get.
Many of these acid attack incidents are domestic violence cases. Sadly, many of them go unreported. In the UK, the Home Office is in the process of drafting legislation that particularly addresses acid attacks. Once this legislation is enforced, persons carrying corrosive substances without a legal permit or justification will be arrested.