SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane police are investigating after a female walking along the Centennial Trail says she was grabbed by a male and held at knifepoint Monday afternoon. After a brief struggle, the female victim was able to free herself and flee the area.
Officers responded to the area of the Monroe Street Bridge just after noon Monday to a reported assault. The victim reported that she was walking along the trail about 100 yards west of the bridge when a male came up behind her and grabbed her. The male, who had a large knife, attempted to drag her off the trail. After a brief struggle and the victim screaming, the male let her go and she ran to Spokane City Hall and called 911.
Officers searched the area but did not find a suspect. The suspect is a white or possibly native male with black hair. He is shorter and stocky. There was no clothing description provided. Police do have video surveillance of the attack, but it's too far away to provide a solid suspect description.
According to police, attackers like this usually prefer to sneak up on their victims. Police say the victim had her hood up and headphones in.
The Spokane Police Department is using this time to remind people to be vigilant when using the trail. Most people walking or running the trail like to listen to music while they are out. This makes it difficult to hear if somebody is coming up from behind you. If you do listen to music, consider turning the music down to a level that you can still hear your surroundings, or make a conscious effort to look behind you often. When possible, run or walk in pairs. Pepper spray is also a good defense against an attacker and they make canisters specifically for joggers.
With spring around the corner, there will be more activity on the local trails. Police ask that you call crime check if something seems suspicious or 911 if an incident is actively happening.
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