A woman has been left traumatized after a homeless man threw a bucket of hot diarrhoea on her face.
Heidi Van Tassel was getting into her car after going out for a Thai meal near the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles, when a homeless man sprinted towards her and pulled her out of the vehicle, before dumping a bucket of hot faeces on her head.
Following the attack, Ms Van Tessel was rushed to Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital where she was tested for infectious diseases.
Speaking to NBC 4 Ms Van Tessel said: “It was diarrhoea. Hot liquid. I was soaked, and it was coming off my eyelashes and into my eyes.
“Paramedics who came to treat me said there was so much of it on me, that it looked like the man was saving it up for a month.
“It was all inside my car because it was so much. He just kept pouring it and splattering it all over me.
“It’s something I won’t ever forget, it’s disgusting.”
Ms Van Tessel will now have to be re-tested for any diseases she may have picked up every three months and she claims the incident has also left her with PTSD.
She said: “It’s so traumatic. The PTSD that I’m dealing with is beyond anything that I’ve ever felt. There needs to be some kind of help for the victims of these crimes.
“It was awful and it changed my life.”
Heidi Van Tassel has been left traumatized by the incident. Credit: NBC 4
The attacker, identified as Jere Blessings, was charged with battery. Blessings has ‘schizophrenia and psychotic disorders’ and was sent to a residential facility for people with mental health disorders for two months, before being released in August.
Ms Van Tessel said she had empathy for Blessings, though it concerns her that he is back out on the streets.
She said: “He doesn’t need jail time, he needs mental health care. I have empathy for him because he needs help.
“I will never, ever, forget his face. What’s the next thing he’s going to do somebody? If he would’ve had a knife, for sure he would’ve stabbed me.”
NBC 4 reports that there has been a surge in crimes committed by homeless people in Los Angeles, with the number of attacks in 2018 more than 50 percent higher than in 2017, and crimes in 2019 on track to climb higher than the 9,846 reported crimes last year.