Albion Park fire victim faces attacker

A woman who suffered burns to 20 per cent of her body after her one-time boyfriend threw petrol on her at an Albion Park Rail house last year has faced her attacker in court.

The girl, 19, told Wollongong District Court on Friday that she and the 17-year-old got into an argument moments before he threw a cup of petrol towards her body on the morning of July 12.

The fluid sprayed onto the woman's right arm, chest, stomach and upper right thigh and immediately ignited, covering her in flames.

The court heard the youth unsuccessfully tried to put out the fire by patting her arms.

She ran outside while still semi-alight and was hosed down by another person at the house, before being put in the shower recess until paramedics arrived.

She was placed in an induced coma for eight days, and required four surgeries, including skin grafts to about 10 per cent of her body.

The youth handed himself in to police the following day, but insisted the attack had been an accident.

He eventually pleaded guilty to a charge of recklessly causing grievous bodily harm, but on Friday disputed the Crown's allegation that he had thrown the petrol at the woman, instead saying he had only kicked the cup containing the petrol towards the woman.

However, presiding Judge Paul Conlon rejected the submission after hearing the woman's version of events and considering her injuries, saying the position of her burns appeared consistent with the liquid having been thrown at her.

The court heard the youth had been on a four-day drug binge before the attack, and the girl had just consumed marijuana.

Defence lawyer Kellie Stares told the court the youth, who has been refused bail since his arrest, had been spending his time behind bars productively, having greatly improved his literacy skills and doing drug and alcohol courses.

However, the court also heard the teen had official reprimands 15 times in the 10 months he'd been in jail.

Judge Conlon will hand down the youth's sentence on June 26.

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