Woman speaks out after being attacked in city centre bar
28 Mar 2017 11:30 AM[View Full Size]
Police have made a further appeal for witnesses after a woman was hit in the face with a glass in a city centre nightclub.
Kirsty Rustman, 30, was out celebrating a friend's birthday at Livello bar in Newcastle when a woman threw a drink over fiancé Matthew Hurst on the dance floor.
But before the pair could say anything the woman turned towards Kirsty and smashed a glass into her face in an unprovoked attack.
The impact caused a three inch cut across the recruitment consultant's forehead - just millimetres from her right eye.
Her attacker fled the scene with her friends and left Kirsty with blood pouring from the gaping facial wound.
She underwent treatment at the RVI where she received nine stitches for the injury - however Kirsty has been told she will now be scarred for life.
Police enquiries to identify the person responsible are ongoing but now Kirsty has released an image of her injury to encourage witnesses to come forward.
The 30-year-old, who is from Southend in Essex but now lives in Durham, said the assault has changed her life.
She said: "My fiancé and I were on the dance floor when a woman walked past us and spilt her drink in front of us. After my partner joked about her spilling a drink and not drinking it, she threw the drink over him.
"Without saying a word she looked at me and hit me directly in the face with the tumbler. The glass shattered on my forehead and blood started pouring from the cut as if someone had turned a warm tap on over my head. Then she just ran off.
"I went to the RVI and they were fantastic and restored some of my faith in humanity. The nurses put stitches in and told me that I was going to be scarred for life as it was a really deep, open wound.
"For the first week after that I didn't leave the house, I didn't want to meet people and face the world. The cut is directly above my eye so can’t be hidden by hair and is still prominent even with make up.
"I have lost all self confidence and now find it hard to maintain eye contact as I'm aware that people are staring at the scar.
"It has changed my life in the sense that I behave differently if I'm out drinking now. I don’t want to lose my self awareness by having too much to drink or wear heels and feel vulnerable.
"I certainly wouldn’t want to intervene if I witnessed an altercation happen now as I know what some horrible people in this world are capable of.
"It really has affected myself, as well as my family, and I want to help police catch the person responsible so they don't go on to assault somebody else and change their life forever."
The incident happened at around 11pm on Saturday, February 4, and the offender is described as being white, in her late 20s to early 30s, around 5ft 5ins tall and of medium build.
She had long straight dark hair, was heavily made up and was wearing dark clothing.
DC Paul Horner, who is the detective leading the investigation, said there were a number of witnesses to the assault who police still needed to speak to.
He added that Northumbria Police had CCTV images of the group of people the offender was with and that they would release them to the public if those involved did not come forward.
DC Horner said: "We have CCTV images of seven women and one man who were in the same group as the attacker and left the club shortly after the assault.
"Police do not ordinarily release images of witnesses but if they do not come forward soon then we will have no choice but to put CCTV images of the group into the media to try and identify them.
"You can see by the injuries Kirsty suffered that night just how serious this assault was and we are confident that it is only a matter of time before we identify the person responsible.
"Kirsty has shown immense bravery during what has been a really difficult time for her and we have nothing but praise for her.
"We will continue to offer support to her as our investigations continue and we would urge anyone who witnessed the altercation to get in touch with our detectives."
Anyone who was in the bar at the time of the attack, or knows the identity of those involved, is asked to contact police on 101 quoting reference number 29 05/02/17.