Teaching Women to be Safe - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Teaching Women to be Safe

By Al Pefley email

Jupiter, FL (WFLX)

"I feel very safe. There's nothing about Jupiter that makes me uneasy," said Roz Whyman as she put groceries in her SUV at a store on Indiantown Road.   Whyman doesn't think twice about going out in Jupiter to shop. But maybe she should.

Police say if you're girl or a woman, you need to watch it.

"Get back! Get back!"

Two female Jupiter Police officers gave us a brief demonstration, showing us what a woman should do to fend off an attacker.  "When you have somebody approaching you, you want to get into a stance and as they're still coming towards you you want to get them away. So you're going to aim for their chin, face region. Get back!" explained Officer Sherry Bodenheimer, as she struck another officer with her palms.

That's just one tactic. Here's another.  "Take your shoe, scrape it against their shin and dig it right into their toe and yell get back!  Get off me!" said Det. Lindsey Canonico. 

Jupiter Police say women are more vulnerable than they think, so  they're offering a class in awareness and self-prevention.  

The class will include a video from the National Self-Defense Institute that illustrates the problem. "Rape is not a crime of passion. It is a violent crime of control, punishment and anger," the narrator explains during a scene of a simulated attack.

Police say it's easy for women to get distracted with kids and cell phones, and they can get into a routine, getting complacent.  "Don't ignore your gut feeling. Walking across a parking lot alone at night could be a potentially dangerous situation," the narrator of the video says.

"We're trying to wake women up and make you understand that it could happen, it may happen and we want to prepare you if it does," said Officer Bodenheimer.

Authorities say they have not seen an increase in violent crimes involving women in Jupiter.   But police want to "attack" the problem, to save women from being attacked.   You don't have to live in Jupiter to take the free two-hour  class. 

To sign up, call Jupiter Police at (561) 741-2412.  No date has been set for the first class, but they say it will probably be in June.

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