This woman used the skills she learned in self-defense class to escape from an attempted sexual assault.
Kelly Herron, 36, was training for a marathon when her worst nightmare occurred, Good Morning America reports. Herron was four miles into her 10-mile run when she stopped to use the public restroom on Sunday.
"As I was drying my hands I became aware that something was wrong," Herron said.
When she turned around, she saw a man standing in the bathroom who began assaulting her. Police identified the man as Gary Steiner, a 40-year-old registered sex offender in Arizona.
"He immediately took me down to the ground, hit both my knees and legs, and then it was a fight on the bathroom floor and I just kept screaming, 'not today m***** f*****,'" she said. She repeated that phrase until she was able to escape.
Herron recalled that at one point she was able to release herself from his grasp, but only for a short period of time.
"I got into that stall flipped on my back and I tried to kick the door lock shut with my foot," Herron said.
She jammed the door, but Steiner was able to get into the stall from the other side and she said “he started beating me in the face with his hand.”
Then she remembered everything she had learned in class and realized “this doesn’t have to be a fair fight.”
"All those little things that I learned in my life...how to punch and everything came back to me," she said. "I started to feel like I was going to lose consciousness...but I got another surge of adrenaline and I reached for the door and was able to get out."
She locked Steiner into the bathroom until the police arrived. Kelly posted a photo of her injuries on Instagram and mentioned her self-defense class. "I learned hard bones and soft fleshy places so I just started hitting the side of his head," she said.
A self-defense instructor told ABC News that people who are attacked should trust their intuition, be loud and fight back, respond immediately and hit with an open hand.
Steiner is in jail and faces charges of attempted rape and assault in the second degree.
My biggest running nightmare became reality- 4 miles into my long run Sunday afternoon, I stopped to use the restroom and was assaulted by a man hiding in a stall (that is my GPS in red lines). I fought for my life screaming("Not today, M**F**er!"), clawing his face, punching back, and desperately trying to escape his grip- never giving up. I was able to lock him in the bathroom until police arrived. Thankfully I just took a self-defense class offered at my work and utilized all of it. My face is stitched, my body is bruised, but my spirit is intact. #fightingchanceseattle #ballard #runnersafety #marathontraining #womensselfdefense #myballard #fightlikeagirl #fightback #dontbeavictim #nottodaymotherfucker #youcantbreakme #instarunners #garmin #garminvivosmarthr
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H/T Twitter / ABC