Wife who poured boiling syrup over sleeping husband is jailed for murder

Corinna Smith has been jailed for life for the murder of her husband. (SWNS)
Corinna Smith has been jailed for life for the murder of her husband. (SWNS)

A woman has been jailed for life after she “brutally and painfully” killed her husband of 38 years by pouring boiling water and sugar over him.

Corinna Smith, 59, left Michael Baines, 81, with 36% burns to his body when she attacked him in July 2020 and told a neighbour, “I think I’ve killed him”.

Prosecutors said sugar with 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 was jailed for life with a minimum of 12 years at Chester Crown Court on Friday after being found guilty following a trial.

The day before the attack took place, Smith was described as angry and very upset at a rumour circulating about her husband that she believed to be true.

The court was told that Smith, also known as Corinna Baines, was also her husband’s carer.

A general view of Chester Crown Court.   (Photo by Peter Byrne/PA Images via Getty Images)
Corinna Smith was jailed at Chester Crown Court. (Getty)

Police said the pensioner was rushed to Whiston Hospital in the early hours of 14 July 2020, in a serious condition.

Despite the best efforts of medical staff, Mr Baines died a month later, on 18 August.

On the day of the incident, Smith returned home, filled a bucket from her garden with boiling water, and mixed it with three bags of sugar.

As Mr Baines lay asleep in bed, she poured the contents over his arms and torso and then left the property in Wirral, Cheshire.

She went to a nearby house and banged on the front door until the occupant answered.

He contacted police and ambulance after hearing her say “I’ve hurt him really bad, I think I’ve killed him".

A short time later, officers arrived at the address and found Mr Baines in severe pain and lying in bed with severe skin injuries.

He was taken to Whiston Hospital Burns Unit and remained there for two weeks in a stable condition before he deteriorated and passed away.

Following the incident, Smith was initially charged with grievous bodily harm – but shortly after the death of her husband, she was charged with murder.

Speaking after sentencing, detective chief inspector Paul Hughes, from Cheshire Constabulary, said: “Smith killed her husband Michael in such a painful and cruel way.

"To throw boiling water over someone when they are asleep is absolutely horrific.

"To also mix three bags of sugar with the water showed the determination she had to cause serious harm.

“The sugar placed into the water makes it vicious. It becomes thicker and stickier and sinks into the skin better.”