A Seattle woman is sharing her story after she successfully fought off an attacker who tried to sexually assault her in a public restroom in the beginning of March (video below). As he tried to assault her, she fought back and screamed three words at him: "Not today, motherf***er."
"All those little things that I learned in my life … how to punch and everything came back to me," 36-year-old Kelly Heron told ABC News. "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."
Heron who is training to run the Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon in the summer, told ABC News that she stopped to use the restroom in middle of a 10-mile jog when she found her worst nightmare unfolding. While she dried her hands, she spotted a man -- believed to be 40-year-old registered sex offender Gary Steiner -- standing in the bathroom. That's when she knew "something was wrong."
According to Inside Edition, Steiner was wearing a mask and kept trying to take her pants off.
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"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, motherf***er,'" she recounted to ABC News.
She fought back tooth and nail, screaming the "battle cry" at him over and over as she employed some moves that she had learned in a self-defense class she took three weeks before, where she was taught to target "hard bones and soft fleshy places" like the side of his head.
"I got into that stall, flipped on my back, and I tried to kick the door lock shut with my foot," she recalled. She missed the lock and jammed the door, so the attacker came back in and started hitting her all over the face, she said.
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That's when she realized that it "doesn't have to be a fair fight" and she started scratching his face. Eventually, she made it out of the bathroom and was able to lock him inside with help from a person passing by.
Police then arrested Steiner, who has a prior record. He now faces assault and attempted rape charges and is in jail pending a $750,000 bail.
"This is one of the most surreal things I've ever seen ... in the four years I've been running this workshop," Jordan Giarratano, a Fighting Chance Seattle instructor, told ABC News. "It's very inspiring and overwhelming and humbling."
According to Giarratano, anyone in a similar situation as Heron should trust their intuition, react quickly and loudly, and fight as hard as possible with an open hand.
Heron is still training for the marathon.
"My face is stitched, my body is bruised, but my spirit is intact," Heron wrote in an Instagram post.