April Sykes was just 18 years-old when she suffered her atrocious ordeal at the hands of a monster, known as Virgil Samuels.
According to mirror.co.uk, Samuels had attacked April and her friend Brandon McMinn while they were all travelling in a car. Suddenly Samuels flipped out of his seat to attack the two ladies; April and Brandon. He began by attempting to strangle April’s friend, Brandon, who at the time of the attack beckoned on April to stop the car.
As soon as the car was stopped, Samuels forced Brandon in the boot, and locked her there, before turning to attack April. April attempted to flee but he caught up with her, dragged her down and raped her multiple times during the night. After his attack on April, he then discovered that Brandon whom he had locked down in the boot had escaped. He then bundled April into the car, poured petrol over her and set her ablaze.
Most incredibly, brave April managed to get out of the boot and walk down the street in the pouring rain. Somebody picked her up and rushed her to hospital with burns over more than 64 per cent of her body. Doctors didn’t know if she would survive that night or not, but she did. April had her right hand amputated just below her elbow and the fingers on her left hand were amputated too. The brave lady recovered years later and afterwards met landscape gardener Chris whom she is currently engaged to.
Since the dreadful incident, April has battled back to regain her life, as her biggest wish was to have her own family, something the doctors weren’t sure she could ever achieve.
Meanwhile, the dreaded hooligan, Samuels, tried to escape after the incident but later handed himself in and pleaded guilty to multiple charges including rape, attempted murder and aggravated kidnapping. He was sentenced to 35 years in prison in 2007.
However, more than a decade after the despicable incident, April now feels she is finally putting her suffering behind her. She recently got engaged to her partner Chris, 32, a landscaper, and now they have nine months old baby boy named, Jonah.
29 year old April said: “I have adapted myself to cope with Jonah because I am limited. I have my own way of carrying him and picking him up and now he’s bigger, I’m not afraid to hold him. I’ve learned that a person isn’t defined by what has happened to them. In the end I chose life,” she said.