Medford Police weighs in on personal safety after woman reports harrowing attempted abduction

A Medford woman reported that two people tried to abduct her while she was out for a jog.

Posted: May 28, 2020 12:17 PM
Updated: May 28, 2020 12:19 PM

MEDFORD, Ore. — The Medford Police Department has personal safety tips for the public after a woman reported that she was nearly abducted while jogging in town.

According to the woman's story, she was jogging along the road behind U.S. Cellular Fields in Medford when the driver of a yellow-tan '90s van and a man riding a bike cornered her.

"Next thing I know the man on the bike speeds past me and pulls up on the side walk in front of me," she wrote in her post to a Facebook scanner group. "The van then pulls up next to me on the road with the front driver's side door open."

The woman said that the van driver began yelling and beckoning to her, but she could not hear what was said due to her headphones. She was able to sprint away and evade the two people, seeing the van speed off. She immediately filed a report with Medford Police.

"Recently, a local woman went through a harrowing experience which she shared in a post," Medford Police said. "While this is concerning for all, its an excellent opportunity to talk about personal safety. By no means is this meant to be critical of the woman involved, as she did an excellent job to get out of this situation."

The agency provided the following tips to deter potential abductors:

  • Be aware of your surroundings. Do your best to not put yourself in areas where you can't be seen or heard by others. Pay attention to other vehicles and persons around you.
  • Buddy system increases personal safety. Less likely to be attacked, and more eyes and ears to notice things.
  • Don't use earphones or use just one one. Audible cues can give you a great head start if you are going to be attacked.
  • Dogs are great deterrents.
  • If someone is attempting to abduct or assault you, fight like you are fighting for your life. Fight dirty, scratch, claw, kick, elbow and go for the eyes, nose and groin. Typically the attacker will disengage if it's not going according to plan.
  • Everyone has a phone, call us if you see something that looks suspicious, you know what doesn't look right in your neighborhood.

"These situations are very, very rare and please do not live in fear of going outside or doing things that you love," Medford Police said. "Simply having the right mindset and being prepared will often keep you out of, or get you out of dangerous situations."

In her post, the woman described the van as a an "old '90s yellowish tan hippy van" that had been altered into a camper with a bike rack on top.

"The man on the bike was a darkly tanned white male, late thirties/early forities, dark brown hair, black sunglasses, a dark charcoal tee shirt, dirty tan cargo shorts, andblack oversized DC looking shoes," she said. "The man/woman [in the van] also had sunglasses with a raccoon fur hat that had cloth coming out from under it, long light brown hair underneath, dark red shirt, tan shorts, and brown hiking boots."

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