Maria Axiak spared jail for boiling water attack on husband

A woman who carried out a horrific act to her husband’s face told her daughter ‘I want him to look in the mirror every day’. Read at the Herald Sun

Maria Doris Axiak walked out of the County Court on Friday after being sentenced to a community corrections order. Picture: Frances Vinall

A woman who poured boiling water over her husband’s face as he slept because he told her he wanted to leave the marriage has walked out of court after promising to be of good behaviour.

Maria Doris Axiak, 58, disconnected the landline and hid her husband’s keys and phone to prevent him getting help after her revenge attack.

She was convicted in the County Court of Victoria of recklessly and intentionally causing serious injury in circumstances of gross violence and sentenced on Friday to a three-year community corrections order.

She spent 37 days in pre-sentence detention.

Axiak hugged her lawyer Nola Karapanagiotidis after she learned she would not spend any more time behind bars.

She left the building flanked by supporters.

On September 22, 2018, Axiak threw a pot of boiling water over her husband of 28 years as he slept.

It perforated his eardrum and burned his head, right arm, shoulder and torso.

That night, her husband had told her was not happy and wanted a separation, a police statement of facts said.

“He informed her he would be sleeping in the spare bedroom and she could sleep in the master bedroom,” it said.

Axiak called her daughter crying hysterically.

Then she smoked a cigarette, disconnected the landline and put a pot of water to boil on the stove.

About 7.30pm she went into the spare room and poured the water over him while he slept.

“She then drove out of the house, taking the (victim’s) mobile phone and car keys with her,” a police summary of facts reads.

The victim had to go to a neighbour’s house to call for help.

He was put into an induced coma in hospital and underwent skin grafts, with burns covering 12 per cent of his body.

Meanwhile, Axiak had arrived at her daughter’s house, where the mother told her, “he deserves it”.

“Out of 20 years of misery, I want him to look in the mirror every day …” she said.

“I took his keys and phone and I don’t give a f**k.”

She later texted her daughter with ‘thumbs up’ and ‘clapping hands’ emojis and wrote, “I hope they keep him there (in hospital) for at least a month”.

Axiak later told police she was sick of him “spoiling her weekends” and of his drinking.

“When he looks in the mirror he can see I’ve been hurt too,” she said, telling police she wanted him to have blisters and bubbles on his skin.

Judge Claire Quin said Axiak had told the court both her parents were alcoholics and her mother was abusive.

She moved from Malta to Australia at age 18 with her first husband, with the “unhappy” marriage ending after 10 years.

The court heard she “felt abused and controlled” by her second husband, her victim.

She has major depression, bipolar, and PTSD, having undergone treatments including electroconvulsive therapy and had multiple voluntary and involuntary hospital admissions for mental health, the court heard.

“I am satisfied on the balance of probabilities that your impaired mental functioning from PTSD is causally linked to the commission of the offence and that it substantially and materially reduces your culpability,” Judge Quin said.

Axiak has no prior convictions and no history of alcohol or drug abuse, Judge Quin said.

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