Maryville, Blount County (WVLT) - Police in Maryville have been working non-stop since a Blount County woman reportedly was raped last night by a man she says impersonated a police officer.
This is the description the victim gave to investigators, a white man, 5'6'' to 5'8'', about 160 pounds with blue eyes.
He got away in a Ford, possibly a Crown Victoria, dark in color, probably black.
Volunteer TV's Blount County Bureau Chief Stephen McLamb has been following the story all day and has the latest.
Police worked in to the wee hours of the night, all day today and a team of investigators has been assigned to the case.
But could instances like this have been prevented.
One rape defense instructor says yes.
A 28-year-old Maryville woman claims she turned off Highway 411 south onto Cherokee Heights Drive.
That's when she saw blue lights behind her and pulled over into the parking lot of the Wiley Boring Center.
"Approached her vehicle. She had her window down. The perpetrator grabbed her by the hair, brought her from her vehicle back to his vehicle, assaulted her and sexually assaulted her as well," Maryville Police Chief Tony Crisp said.
She then says she was pushed out of his car.
He fled, and she went for help, but are there things women can do to protect themselves?
"Absolutely, and that's what our class offers," Officer Michell Irwin said.
Michelle Irwin is a Rape Aggression Defense instructor.
If you are concerned about stopping for an unmarked car, she says to put on your flashers and drive slowly to a safe area.
"Even if it's a block down the road, or a couple of blocks, I would suggest you find somewhere that's well-lit, even with a lot of people around," Irwin said.
And it never hurts to program 911 into your cell phone.
"You can even pick up your cell phone and call 911 and say, look, I've got a vehicle attempting to stop me, do you have an officer out on that," Irwin said.
But once the stop is made, you can keep your doors locked and your windows cracked.
"If they can keep their window down far enough to where we can hear them, and they can hear us, and they can hand us the items that we request through the window, that's not a problem," Irwin said.
If you are pulled inside a car, there are techniques they only teach in the class and only to a class of women.
"We don't want to give them that step ahead. We always want to stay one step ahead of them," Irwin said.
The Maryville Police Department is preparing for a rape aggression defense class for early December.
Registration begins November 1st.
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