EDMOND, Okla. — The trip to Walmart and back is just a couple of miles.
Alyssa Avery jogged the I-35 frontage road several times a week without a problem, until Tuesday night.
Her brother Nathan said, “Police say someone may have followed her from Walmart or something like that. She might have been hit from behind.”
The 20-year-old college student was on her way home.
She was wearing earbuds, music blaring.
That gave the attacker a chance to sneak up from behind and put his hand around her mouth.
Luckily, she had just competed a self-defense course.
Nathan Avery told us, “She bit the person’s finger who attacked her. She shouted a lot, which she learned from self-defense class.”
The attacker let go and Alyssa stumbled a quarter of a mile to the house.
Nathan said, “Luckily, she was able to get away. We’re thankful for that.”
Police said late-night joggers are more vulnerable to a violent confrontation like this.
According to Edmond Police Spokesperson Jenny Monroe, “It’s so hot during the day. Lots of people jog in the early morning or evening when it’s still dark. You always need to run with a buddy if possible and if you wear earphones, don’t blare the music so you can hear.”
Alyssa is recovering in ICU from severe head trauma.
Police said her quick thinking may have saved her life.
Authorities are now reviewing Walmart surveillance footage and searching the roadside for clues, which could include DNA from the attacker’s trail of blood.
The bite mark on the suspect’s hand may require medical attention so local hospitals are also on alert.
If you were in the area of I-35 and 2nd St. around 9:40 p.m. Tuesday, call Edmond Crime Stoppers at (405) 359-4466.