Katie Piper praises Strictly for distracting her ahead of acid attacker’s release from prison

Katie Piper has emotionally broken her silence after it was revealed that the man who attacked her with acid will be released from prison.

Stefan Sylvestre, 30, was given a life sentence in 2009 after he hurled the substance over Katie, 34, the previous year in an assault arranged by her ex-boyfriend Daniel Lynch and was told he’d have to serve a minimum of six years before being eligible for parole.

Now though the Parole Board have decided to release him following nine years in jail.

Katie – who was left with horrific injuries after the attack – has admitted that rehearsing for Strictly Come Dancing has helped to distract her from the tough news.

This is a really difficult time for me. I am trying to come to terms with the decision and this is something I need to deal with,” the mum-of-two said in a statement to her instagram fans.

“Over the past two weeks Strictly has already given me such a welcome and positive distraction from my past.

“Whilst there is never a good time to hear this news, I am glad I have this new journey to concentrate on.”

Katie has received countless messages of support from her followers since the news, with one commenting: “I can’t believe this is actually happening. Please know that we all got your back, you’re such a strong, inspirational and beautiful human. So proud of you”

“I can’t even begin to imagine how much this is torturing you. Strictly will see you through, another said, whilst one added: You stay as strong as ever. You’re an incredible woman and I can’t wait to see your dancing”

The Parole Board have revealed that they came to the decision following an oral hearing and said that Katie read out statements in person.

I’m running the @royalparkshalf Half Marathon for my charity @kpfoundation Please can you sponsor me the link is in my bio 🏃🏽‍♀️🏃🏽‍♀️🏃🏽‍♀️🏃🏽‍♀️🏃🏽‍♀️🏃🏽‍♀️This will be my second half marathon, after the last one I said never again… but here we are! Since the last one I've added to my family with a new baby girl so currently 8 months post-partum and not as fit as I would like to be or intended to be before I entered this race! But those of you that know me will know I love a challenge and my motivation for taking this one on is because my Foundation needs more funds for survivors of burns to stay at our live-in rehabilitation centre. It’s a brand new service that changes lives through scar management, physiotherapy and well-being activities. I’m putting my full focus into making sure the centre is transformational for people who have been through the very worst. Lots of burn survivors (myself included a very long time ago) fear they won’t ever be able to go outside again, let alone run around the amazing parks of London with thousands of other committed runners. Many of us also thought exercise would be something we wouldn't be able to embrace ever again, it’s harder for someone with this kind of injury not being able to sweat in skin grafted areas and breathe through a scarred respiratory system – the list does go on, but I won’t bore you! But now some of our amazing supporters and I are going to run 13 miles! I hope this gives the patients at my centre more inspiration to know that whatever their own goal is, they can reach it. If we hit £12,000 together, we can cover a whole month’s worth of the specialist burns therapy part of a one month stay. Please support me by donating as much as you can spare. Thank you so, so much for reading and getting behind me and the team!

A post shared by K A T I E P I P E R (@katiepiper_) on

“The panel took full account of the content of these statements and the supporting documentation,” a summary read.

They came to the conclusion that several factors reduced Sylvestre’s risk of causing serious harm in the future.

Katie recently admitted that the health problems she had suffered as a result of the acid attack – including restricted vision in her left eye and a tug of scar tissue which prevents her from fully moving her head – were making her Strictly training a bit more difficult.

“Everyone will be like, ‘Why’s she pulling that funny face?’ and I’ll be like, ‘No, that’s my face!’ she told The Mirror.

“I’m like an elephant with no rhythm. When I was practising I was stamping on feet and banging into people.

“I’ll just have to work really hard at the training.”

From our sister site Woman. Words by Anna Francis.




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