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Packing a punch in Seattle; survivor-led self-defense movement takes off

Wednesday, March 29, 2017 - 01:46

Seattle's Kelly Herron, who became a hero in her city by fighting off a would-be rapist in a public bathroom, has inspired hundreds of other women to learn self-defense tactics. Jillian Kitchener reports.

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They're training in the art of self-defense...hundreds of women answering the call to prepare for the unthinkable. That call has come from Kelly Herron, the 36 year-old who's become something of a folk-hero in Seattle, after fighting off a would-be rapist in a public bathroom. It happened on March fifth. She was left bruised and battered, but ultimately, won the day. HERRON SOT: "This is where I was clawing his face and screaming at him..." Herron says she was taught to "be loud and fight like a savage" in self-defense training just three weeks before the attack. It worked. She defeated her male assailant and locked him in the bathroom where he was arrested. (SOUNDBITE) (English) KELLY HERRON SAYING: "This happened to me in the middle of the day; it was a Sunday afternoon. So you always need to be aware of your surroundings and be prepared, but not live in fear." Jordan Giarratano owns the karate and kickboxing school that prepared Herron. (SOUNDBITE) (English) FIGHTING CHANCE SEATTLE OWNER, JORDAN GIARRATANO, SAYING: "I identified a need for more embodied, more feminist-oriented self-defense workshop that also provided practical real world skills." Scores of women say they are now choosing education over fear, inspired by Herron's story. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CAROLYN KADING, CLASS PARTICIPANT, SAYING: "I came today because I heard Kelly's story and I connected with her. I'm a runner. I run around Seattle all the time and I thought it was just a really practical and useful tip to have." Herron says, during the attack, her 'inner warrior' came out strong: HERRON SOT: "She is there to stand up and say 'not today'" Internet searches for the course have increased tenfold… and thanks to Herron's story, many more Seattle women say they feel empowered by what they've learned.

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Packing a punch in Seattle; survivor-led self-defense movement takes off

Wednesday, March 29, 2017 - 01:46