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‘Livid’ Mom Throws Boiling Water On Husband After Learning He Allegedly Sexually Abused Her Children

Photo: Cheshire Police
Corinna Smith

A British mother was sentenced to life in prison in July 2021 after killing her husband with a mixture of boiling water and sugar.

The attack on 80-year-old Michael Baines left him with injuries that eventually cost him his life.

Corinna Smith claims she killed her husband after learning he had sexually abused her children.

Prosecutors say Smith’s daughter had come to her mother to accuse Baines of sexually abusing her when she was a child. 

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She also claimed that Baines had sexually abused her brother, Smith’s son.

A court heard that Smith was “livid” and “fuming” by the allegations made on July 14, 2020 in which her daughter claimed the abuse had continued "for many years when they were children."

Smith’s son died by suicide following the alleged abuse.

In 2007, Smith’s son Craig passed away after a troubled life and going to prison for assault.

He had previously told Smith that, as a child, he had been molested and also told her the man he attacked was a "paedophile" who had "touched him sexually."

When Smith’s daughter alleged that Baines had sexually abused the two children, Smith connected this to her son’s claims.

"You found it difficult to take everything in, but made the connection between what Craig had said the day before he died and what your daughter was telling you,” said the judge during Smith’s trial.

"You were understandably very upset.”

Michael Baines was left with fatal injuries from the attack.

On the night of the incident, 59-year-old Smith took a bucket from her garde, boiled two kettles of water and mixed it with three bags of sugar.

Prosecutors said the sugar with the water "made the liquid more viscous, thicker and stickier, so that it stays on the skin and causes greater damage and that is exactly what it did."

Smith then entered the bedroom she shares with her husband, where he was sleeping, and poured the mixture over him.

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Smith then went to a nearby house and banged on the front door. This neighbor contacted police and ambulance after hearing her say “I’ve hurt him really bad, I think I’ve killed him.”

Baines suffered significant burns to 36% of his body. He was rushed to Whiston Hospital Burns Unit where he was stabilized in the critical care unit and later the high dependency unit.

However, after he was in hospital for five weeks, receiving repeated surgery and skin grafts, he died a month later, on August 18, 2020.

Prosecutors questioned Smith’s version of the events.

Prosecutors pushed back against Smith’s initial argument of the incident being manslaughter due to loss of control.

This argument was disputed because of the planning that was required and the time it took to carry out the attack – Smith waited 13 minutes for the water to boil.

Prosecutors also argued that while Smith likely believed her husband was guilty of the accusations against him, there is no way of knowing if the allegations were true.

“Killing Mr. Baines also took away any opportunity for the allegations to be tested,” the judge explained, “That took away his right to a fair trial, bearing in mind that everyone is innocent until proven guilty.” 

I have no doubt that this has caused untold pain to Mr. Baines’ children. The allegations are left hanging but unproven…”

A jury found her guilty of murder, she was sentenced to life in prison and must serve 12 years before there is a possibility of parole.

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Alice Kelly is a senior news and entertainment editor for YourTango. Based out of Brooklyn, New York, her work covers all things social justice, pop culture, and human interest. Keep up with her Twitter for more.

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