Elderly self-defense class

By Gianna Caserta - Reporter

Harris County authorities are teaching senior citizens how to fight back against possible attackers.

More than 20 women, mostly grandmothers, spent Wednesday learning how to protect themselves.

"They aren't expecting you to fight back, they are expecting you to be compliant," said Betty Ray, an attendee of the self-defense class.

The women are working to change the stigma and become empowered and self-reliant women when it comes to personal safety.

"Beware, Grandma's learning," said Ray.

First timers in the class learned defense moves they can use if they ever encounter an assailant.

Audrey Robinson said she's learned how to yell, take a defensive stance and how to set herself up so she won't get hurt.  

Ray has already had to put her self-defense moves to use after leaving a grocery store with her hands full of plastic bags.

"I felt the hairs on the back of my head, it was warning, I listened to them, I turned around squarely and saw a man coming right at me, as soon as I squared off, he took off at a 45-degree angle," Ray said.

The class came days after a 67-year-old grandmother was sexually assaulted by a stranger in her west Houston apartment.

"There are so many women of all ages that are being attacked, so we try to help them be able to defend themselves before something like that happens," said Deputy Sheila Enloe, with the Harris County Sheriff's Office.

Click here to learn more about the Harris County Rape Aggression Defense program.

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