Actress who was out jogging when stranger chased her down a canal after pretending to ask about a lost dog warns othersSeptember 22, 2020
A PLAYWRIGHT who was out jogging when a stranger chased her down a canal has issued an urgent warning.
Grace Chapman was jogging in Oxford on Saturday when she was approached by a strange man who chased her.
Grace said her alleged attacker tried to trick her by telling her he had lost his dog.
She has since decided to “take power back” by leaving warning notes about the man along the water’s edge.
The notes describe the “predatory” man as being in his "mid thirties, slim bald and 5’10”
She also posted on social media to warn other woman runners.
On Sunday she wrote: “Yesterday, I ran along an isolated stretch of the canal in Oxford.
“A man appeared. He glanced behind him to check who was coming and started towards me. I turned to run. He tried to stop me, asking if I had seen a 'brown dog'. I then ran. He chased me. At a pace.
“Thank god for adrenaline. I’ve never run so fast in my life and eventually I lost him."
In her post, Grace said the attack was "sudden, opportunistic and terrifying".
"I have to work through this. He is unchanged," she wrote.
“Trust your instinct. Always. He glanced behind him when he saw me to check we were alone. I recognised it immediately and it bought me valuable seconds. Female intuition is a powerful thing. Listen to yours and get out of there.
“Don’t be polite. He knew that asking me to help him find his 'lost dog' could potentially stop me from running away. F*** no. Cause offence. Get out of there.
“Don’t doubt yourself afterwards. As women, we are taught to minimise. No. You know what happened and how it made you feel. Trust in this."
She also advised women to report incidents to the police, and for those walking or running alone to notify someone of their location.
She added: “If you feel up to it the next day, take some power back. We put signs up all along the canal and I’m writing this because – well – f*** him.
“Men. Have some awareness of how women runners feel out alone. Clock when it’s just you and them on a narrow path. Make space. It’s not just our responsibility to feel safe.
“Cat calling, intimidation, harassment, the threat of being attacked. Female runners have to run with this every day.
“Let’s talk about it, let’s listen and let’s be safe so we can stay the beautiful bounding beasts we are.”
Her post, which has since been liked more than 3,000 times, has had an outpouring of support.
Catherine Lewis wrote: “So glad you are okay, definitely agree. Be aware of your surroundings and trust your instincts.”
Kim Nash added: “Well done you for outrunning and outsmarting that absolute a*** of a predator.”
And Becky Fielder said: “Good for you, we need more posts like this. You are amazing.”
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