Salisbury Novichok survivor Charlie Rowley says poison will eventually kill him as he lives in fear of catching a cold

Charlie Rowley, 45, says he is losing his sight and has suffered a series of strokes since he came into contact with the nerve agent at his home in Amesbury near Salisbury in June.

He told The Sunday Mirror: "Novichok could kill me. It's on my mind all the time. I'm terrified."

Charlie now also suffers from heart trouble and has even contracted meningitis since being exposed to the deadly chemical weapon.

Assassins targeted ex-Russian double agent Sergei Skripal, 67, and his daughter Yulia, 33, in Salisbury in March this year.

Charlie and his partner Dawn Sturgess became unwittingly involved in the plot when Charlie found a bottle of perfume in a charity bin and gave it to Dawn as a gift.



She sprayed the nerve agent on her wrists and began fitting and foaming at the mouth within just 15 minutes.

And despite doctors' best efforts, Dawn died in hospital ten days later.

Charlie now says he is one of the few recorded cases of people who have survived an exposure to Novichok – so medics can't guarantee what the long-term effects will be.

Charlie said: "I'm still worried the Novichok could kill me if I get any sort of virus again – it's on my mind all the time.

"I'm dreading getting a cold."

He also told of his relief when he was discharged from hospital, only to be readmitted within a few weeks after going blind and losing the use of his left arm because of meningitis.

Doctors said he had suffered several strokes and needed a pacemaker fitted.

Charlie also spoke out about his guilt for accidentally giving the Novichok to Dawn – even saying that he felt suicidal and contemplated jumping out of his hospital window when he discovered she had died.

He had previously suffered from drug problems and met Dawn, who was a recovering alcoholic, when they were both staying in supported living accommodation in Salisbury.

A previous girlfriend of Charlie's had died through drug abuse three years before.

Dawn helped Charlie get through the trauma – after he found his girlfriend's lifeless body in a bedroom.

Charlie has been told that he may ultimately be compensated for his Novichok ordeal, but it could take ten years.

Now he doesn't think he's going to live that long.

Five people were poisoned in the Novichok attack – Sergei Skripal, his daughter Yulia, Dawn, Charlie, and Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey, who investigated the incident.

GRU agents using the named Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov attempted to murder Sergei Skripal with the nerve agent developed by the Soviet Union.



 

Source: Read Full Article