An 11-year-old girl attending a sleepover in the Bronx was severely burned when an older girl poured boiling water on her face Monday morning.
She suffered burns to her face, back and shoulders and was rushed to the hospital in serious but stable condition.
Jamoneisha Merritt's mother, Ebony Merritt, told NY1 News that her daughter did not understand why these friends had done this.
The girl's mother, Ebony Merritt, has talked to prosecutors about the felony criminal charges facing the 12-year-old attacker.
Relatives say Jamone still hasn't seen how the cruel act has changed her appearance, but her closest cousins say after spending the last two days with her in the hospital they're confident nothing can break her uplifting spirit.
"Her and her friend got into an argument", Merritt's cousin said, according to ABC7. "The girl admitted it, "I don't like her, I wanted to do it". She asked for prayers for her daughter, adding that she is doing much better. "But after she saw what she did to (Jamoneisha) was really wrong, she tried to kill herself".
"I'm going to cut your face, you f-ing b--!"
Panton said that Merritt "basically moved into their apartment" about a month ago and had consistently stayed overnight.
'They always prank each other, ' said Panton.
Jamoneisha's family says she is joyful, fun and energetic. "I can't bear to look at her... it gets me too upset".
The "hot water challenge" has been proliferating online, apparently pushing people to boil water and toss the scalding liquid on unsuspecting victims.
When it comes to the case of Jamoneisha, she has been emotionally scarred by the incident and her family has not yet shown her the severity of the burns. Children and teens seeing the fake challenge may not be aware of the lasting damage the boiling water can cause.