A jogger who was assaulted in a public bathroom during a marathon training run has shared details of how she fought back against her attacker — and footage of her GPS fitness tracker that captured the entire thing — on social media. Her incredible knowledge of self defense not only helped her fight off a potential rapist, but also garnered her praise across the Internet when her story went viral.
Kelly Herron, 36, wrote on Instagram that she was on a 10-mile run through Golden Gardens Park in Seattle when she decided to take a bathroom break.
Gary Steiner, a 40-year-old reported registered sex offender, followed her into the restroom and attacked her. The assailant wrestled Herron to the ground and beat her in the knees and legs, according to ABC News.
Fortunately, she had taken a self-defense just three weeks earlier, and told ABC News that she was able to put her skills to good use. “I learned hard bones and soft fleshy places, so I just started hitting the side of his head,” she said.
Herron wrote on Instagram:
“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.”
A self-defense instructor who spoke to ABC News advised women who are attacked to trust their intuition, be loud, fight as hard as possible, respond immediately, and hit with an open hand.
Herron’s alleged attacker is facing charges of second-degree assault and attempted rape, and being held on $750,000 bail.
She said that she is still training to run the Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon this summer.