FOX 32 NEWS - A 25-year-old woman who is training for the Chicago Marathon was attacked early Saturday morning in the River North neighborhood.
The victim was loosening up shortly before 6 am, adjusting her earphones, and setting her GPS app, when a man asked her what she was doing. She ignored him, and then near Franklin and Kinzie, he attacked her.
“He wrapped his hands around my neck and strangled me to the ground, and was choking me. And it was absolutely horrifying,” the victim said.
The woman believes she would have been sexually assaulted, and possibly murdered, if it wasn’t for the help of a complete stranger who was nearby.
“A complete stranger was walking down the street and saw from several blocks away, and ran after the scene. The attacker saw the man approaching me. He released and he took off running,” the victim said.
Security cameras caught the attack on video, but the victim says they don't show the attacker's face. She describes him as a white male in his late twenties or early thirties, who was wearing a black shirt and khaki shorts.
The victim of the attack is telling her story because with the marathon approaching, so many runners are out in the early morning hours, and she wants them to be on the alert.
Some runners say they avoid early morning or late evening runs.
“I try not to go at night. My sister jogs a lot as well. So I never go after dark or in the morning before a lot of people are around,” said Carlie Alderman.
Word of Saturday's attack surprised residents who are familiar with the neighborhood.
“I don’t' really expect attacks to happen in this neighborhood, maybe once in the last year I've heard of something happening, a few blocks away, but that was a few blocks away and totally unrelated to anything in this neighborhood,” Laura Stypka said.
Chicago police say they're looking for the suspect in the attack.