Acid hoax case heads to Vancouver court Wednesday

Prosecutor will recommend supervised release for Bethany Storro

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The Washougal Safeway employee who has admitted to police she applied acid to her face is expected to make her first appearance in court Wednesday.

Bethany Storro, of Vancouver, is scheduled to appear in front of Judge John Nichols, at 8:45 a.m., in Clark County Superior Court. She is facing three counts of second-degree theft by deception. They include aggravating circumstances against Storro because they involved Good Samaritan donations of more than $750.

The victims include Safeway ($3,000), Anytime Fitness ($800) and Michael Kite, of California ($1,000).

Tony Golik, Clark County deputy prosecuting attorney with the major crimes unit, said Monday he plans to recommend that Storro be placed on supervised release as she receives treatment to her face.

“With supervised release, the court gets information about where the person will be staying,” he said. “A supervised release unit checks in and sets up a schedule where they have to report in regularly.”

If Storro is convicted of theft, Golik said the standard sentencing range would be a total of two to five months in jail. The aggravating circumstances could allow a judge to sentence above the standard range and approve a maximum total of five years.

Attorney Andrew Wheeler is representing Storro.

There were two bank accounts containing donations for Storro. One has approximately $20,000, and the other has $4,595. Those amounts do not include $3,000 from Safeway customers and Storro’s co-workers.

Storro spent approximately $1,500 after she was discharged from the Oregon Burn Center at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center, in Portland. Purchases included clothes, dinner for her parents and train tickets for her, her sister and mother. Storro also paid off most of the bill for a laser facial peel she had received approximately two weeks before the reported assault.

Storro, 28, told police on Aug. 30 she sustained burns to her face as she exited her vehicle in the area of Eighth and Columbia streets, in downtown Vancouver. She said an African American female threw a cup of liquid acid at her face.

During questioning by police on Sept. 16, Storro said she used drain cleaner to create her facial burns.

“Storro told me the reason she applied the caustic substance was to first, kill herself,” said VPD Detective Wallis Stefan. “Secondly, she stated, if that proved not to be fatal, then she could get her face redone.”