A former Miss Italy finalist who had acid thrown in her face, allegedly by a jilted ex-boyfriend, has posted her first selfie since the attack.
Gessica Notaro was attacked in the Italian seaside resort of Rimini in January and remains in danger of losing the sight in her left eye. The 28-year-old sustained severe burn injuries to her face, hip and legs.
This week Notaro updated her Instagram page, writing: “Good morning friends this is my first selfie after so long.” She also warned of fake profiles being set up in her name and asked users to report them.
Last week Notaro appeared on the Italian Canale 5 show with host Maurizio Costanzo, during which she revealed her injuries to the public.
The 27-year-old arrived on set wearing a scarf over her face, but decided to remove it during filming, explaining: “I want you to see what he did to me. This isn’t love.”
She added: “When the acid ate away at my face I was on my knees praying. I prayed to God: take away my beauty but at least leave me with my sight.”
Her former boyfriend Jorge Edson Tavares was arrested a day after the attack. The 29-year-old from Cape Verde denies any involvement.
In January, La Stampa reported Tavares had started harassing Notaro in August when she ended their two-year relationship. It added a court had issued a restraining order against Tavares when the attack occurred.
The couple were both employed at an aquarium in Rimini, where Notaro trained dolphins and Tavares was a handyman.
Notaro was a finalist in 2007’s Miss Italy competition and has also worked as a model and a TV presenter.
A Miss Italy organiser described the attack as “yet another act of violence against a woman, and using one of the most despicable methods.” Patrizia Mirigliani told La Republicca: “There is no greater crime than defacing a person’s face in order to erase her identity, her beauty, her smile.”
The trial against Tavares, who is accused of grievous bodily harm, began on Friday.