PORTLAND, Ore. - Vancouver police released a composite sketch of the suspect who they say threw acid in the face of a 28-year-old Vancouver woman Monday.
The suspect who attacked Bethany Storro is described as an African American woman with slicked-back hair that was pulled into a pony tail. She was wearing a green top and khaki pants.
She is also described as having an athletic build, wore no makeup and may have had three piercings in the top of her ear.
Storro had stopped at a Starbucks near Esther Short Park Monday evening at about 7:15 to get a cup of coffee when a woman walked up to her and said, “Hey pretty girl, do you want to drink this?”
When Storro declined, the woman threw the acid in her face and took off.
“When I first saw her she had this weirdness about her, like jealousy, rage,” said Storro.
Storro has not lost her spirit even after having the acid thrown in her face. She appeared before cameras Thursday at Legacy Emanuel Hospital with her entire face and head covered in bandages after surgery.
Storro said she wanted to speak out about the incident because she wants people to see what the woman did to her and to help people find the woman before someone else is senselessly attacked.
“Why did you? Did you wake up that morning and go, ‘I’m going to, I’m going to carry some acid in a cup and throw it at the first person that I see? Was it a dare? You know, why me?” Storro said.
She said she believes it was God’s grace that she was wearing sunglasses at the time. Normally, she doesn’t wear them, but she got a surprise paycheck, remembered a pair she liked, and bought them 20 minutes before the attack.
“God is watching over me. … I believe in him. That his hands are on me and I can’t live the rest of my life like that – in fear. I can’t let what she did to me wreck me life.”
“I try to stay positive and there’s moments when I get really frustrated, and I want to get mad at somebody. But there’s nobody to get mad at, you know.”
Storro is hard of hearing due to a childhood virus so her sight is especially important to her and she can read lips.
With her parents by her side, she described the pain the moment the acid hit her.
“Oh, you don’t even know! It was the most painful thing. Like I told everybody, my heart stopped, I almost passed out. It’s like, imagine – I mean, it ripped through my clothes the instant it touched my shirt. I looked down and it just ripped through my shirt and made holes in my shirt.
“So imagine that on your skin. I could hear it sizzling. Once it hit me, I could actually hear it bubbling and sizzling my skin.”
Storro’s at the beginning of her healing process so doctors aren’t sure yet just how bad the damage to her face will be.
Vancouver police ask anyone who may recognize the suspect or who was in the area at the time of the attack and who may have information about it, to call Detective Wally Stefan at 360-487-7425.