Student Awarded $60M After He Was Left Looking Like ‘Something Out Of A Horror Movie’ 

Alonzo Yanes was a high school student when he was severely burned in a botched chemistry experiment.

The now 21-year-old is speaking out for the first time since a court awarded him almost $60million in damages. 

Yanes sustained third-degree burns to 30 percent of his body in 2014.

He was engulfed in a fireball during a “Rainbow Experiment” at his prestigious New York prep school. 

Student Awarded $60M After He Was Left Looking Like 'Something Out Of A Horror Movie' 
Inside Edition

He was awarded $ 59.17 million by a Manhattan jury back in July. Yanes sued the  Department of Education and his Beacon High School teacher Anna Poole.

Despite his large settlement, he told Inside Edition on Thursday he was not motivated by money.

Instead he wants to ensure all classrooms are safe for all students.

“If a teacher is going to undertake a demonstration like this, you’ve got to use precautions, you’ve got to take safety measures,” Yanes lawyer Ben Runbinowitz stated. 

It was revealed in court that Yanes’ classroom did not have a fire blanket, shower and eyewash.

Student Awarded $60M After He Was Left Looking Like 'Something Out Of A Horror Movie' 
Inside Edition

Yanes was just 17 when he was left with the trauma of burns on 30 percent of his body. 

He claims his burns have left him with such low confidence that he has remained a virgin. 

Yanes had been carrying out the “Rainbow Experiment” where mineral salts are burned to produce multicolored flames, the court heard. 

“The way that I look, it gets in the way too much. I don’t think the scars are very attractive,” the 21-year-old told the courtroom. 

He says it still hurts that people still “gawk” at him five years since the accident. 

“I will never get used to that. It still hurts tremendously,” he confessed.  

In order to get through the day, the former student admits that often takes off his glasses so that he can’t see people staring at him.  

“Not a single day passes by when I don’t think about my injuries or what my life would have been if I wasn’t involved in that injury,” Yanes sadly told the court. 

Meanwhile, an expert has testified in court that chemistry teacher Anna Poole ignored safety protocols.  

Samuella Sigmann, a professor at Appalachian State University, said that the “Rainbow Experiment” should never have been conducted. 

“The risk was very high,” Sigmann told the court, as reported by the New York Post.

Student Awarded $60M After He Was Left Looking Like 'Something Out Of A Horror Movie' 
Inside Edition

The professor also pointed out that Poole was wearing goggles, while her students were not.

The strain of Alonzo Yanes injuries have also affected those closest to him.

Yanes mom, Yvonne, told jurors of how she heartbreakingly had to tell her young daughter that her brother’s appearance had changed. 

A tearful Yvonne, 51, said she told Yanes younger sister Alana, who was seven at the time:

“He will probably look very scary to you. He will probably look like a monster, like Frankenstein.”

Written by Christine Haveford

Christine loves all things cinema, and she's been that way ever since she was a little girl. In fact, she is so passionate about cinema that she decided to pursue cinematography as a full-time career, and is now pursuing film studies at the New York Film School. Originally from Florida, she is still exploring the new city, people, places, and the culture, loves the new weather, going ice skating during winters, and spending time with her fellow classmates and friends from college.

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