It’s not often that we congratulate violence. But if the story involves a sex attacker trying to force himself onto a woman, then being knocked out by her, it’s difficult not to offer our congratulations.
Mark Willis, 39, tried to attack a woman in Cheltenham in the early hours, punching her a few times before pushing her over a wall. He then tried to pull down her shorts, before she quickly flipped the script.
Because it turned out that she is a kickboxer, that has also taken self defence classes.
First, she tried to break his arm with a move that she knows, then managed to lock him into a scissor grip and throttle him until he passed out.
The woman told the jury what happened:
She told them that he got on top of her and told her: “Be quiet and do as I tell you and you won’t get hurt.”
I swore at him. I think I said something like ‘go f*** yourself.’ Then he hit me again in the face. He was grabbing at my clothing.
Then she told them about the arm lock:
The intention is to send the elbow in the wrong direction and cause extreme pain or a break. I was not able to do that.
I think he figured out what I was trying to do because he managed to wriggle free and he hit me again repeatedly in the face. I was stunned for a moment.
Again I could feel him grabbing between my legs and pulling at my clothes. My legs were still free so I lifted my left leg up onto his shoulder and around the back of his neck.
I crossed my right leg over and squeezed together as hard as I could. He seemed to struggle for air – which was the point! His head was locked down. He lifted his right hand and literally pounded as hard as he could on the side of my face.
I closed my eyes and held it for as long as I could hoping he would pass out in a few seconds. Then I felt his body go limp. I thought he had lost consciousness or run out of air.
Willis’ DNA was found on her shorts, and she correctly picked him out of an ID parade.
Convicted of sexual assault, he will be sentenced soon.