Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Woman receives bravery award for fighting off sex attacker with her keys

woman walking.jpg

A woman who fought off a sex attacker with her keys has been given an award for “astonishing” bravery. 

The 21-year-old victim was walking home from work in Sheffield city centre in November last year when Jonathon Holmes dragged her into a hedge and told the terrified woman "you're going to enjoy this," before trying to rape her.

She managed to use her housekeys to cut his face, as well as punch him in the stomach twice and bite his tongue, before shouting "you won't do that to a woman again."

Holmes had stalked the woman for a mile before the attack. Suspecting she was being followed, she had put her keys in her hand as she was attempting to phone her partner.

When the woman retaliated and two people passing by heard the scuffle, Holmes escaped and sustained further injuries.

The 21-year-old did this to attacker Jonathon Holmes when he tried to rape her on her way home from work

The 21-year-old used her keys to defend herself against Jonathon Holmes when he tried to rape her on her way home from work

Image: South Yorkshire Police

Officers tracked Holmes down and after pleading guilty to sexual assault, he is now serving a four-and-a-half year jail sentence for the attack.

South Yorkshire Police superintendent Scott Green said: “The horrifying assault culminated in the woman being forced into a nearby hedge whilst the male tried to get on top of her, groping her and telling her ‘you’re going to enjoy this’.”

Honouring the woman with the award, Police Superintendent Green told her: “You displayed an astonishing level of bravery during this investigation, your actions undoubtedly deterred the offender from continuing his assault and your detailed recollection of such a traumatic event, led to the arrest, conviction and imprisonment of a very dangerous criminal.

“As a husband, as the father of a daughter and on behalf of every woman in this city, I commend you.

“On behalf of South Yorkshire Police we recognise your bravery, selflessness and truly outstanding courage in helping make this city a safer place for every woman in it.”

The woman told Sheffield Crown Court: “I believed without a doubt this man was going to rape me. My life would have been over - he might as well have killed me right there. I was so terrified but so angry.” 

Related

rexfeatures_4778600h.jpg

Iggy Azalea is the latest star to expose extreme photoshopping

GettyImages-454030010.jpg

Andy Murray backs Serena Williams in sexist pay gap debate

MyBodyDoes.JPG

Women use affirmation stickers to fight back against body-shaming ads

emma-watson.jpg

Watch Emma Watson beatboxing for gender equality

smileforjoe.jpg

News host tells Hillary Clinton to cheer up. Women respond brilliantly

Beyonce.jpg

Model with muscular dystrophy stars in Beyonce's new fashion range ad

opener_rt.jpg

Sarah Wood, Isy Suttie & Bella Younger

thinkstockphotos-467037208.jpg

At last, tampon tax set to be scrapped after EU deal

depressing.jpg

Feeling JOMO? Two women debate our new love of staying in

More

Andy Murray defends female tennis players – again

Once more proving himself a feminist ally

by Susan Devaney
19 Sep 2017

All the best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From Sienna Miller’s backstage abode to Poppy Delevingne’s new look

by Nicola Colyer
19 Sep 2017

Hillary Clinton tweets a killer comeback to Donald Trump – again

After he shares a GIF of himself hitting her with a golf ball

by Susan Devaney
18 Sep 2017

Gossip Girl fans, this is who was originally set to play Serena

Things would have been VERY different…

by Kayleigh Dray
18 Sep 2017

You have to read Lena Waithe’s awe-inspiring Emmy acceptance speech

The Master of None star is the first black woman to win an Emmy for comedy writing

by Moya Crockett
18 Sep 2017

This is what got bleeped out of Elisabeth Moss’ acceptance speech

It’s a sentiment worth sharing…

by Kayleigh Dray
18 Sep 2017

Nicole Kidman takes a stand against domestic violence at 2017 Emmys

“It is a complicated, insidious disease... and it exists far more than we allow ourselves to know”

by Kayleigh Dray
18 Sep 2017

The best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From Chrissy Teigen’s anniversary celebrations to Victoria Beckham’s girls’ night out

by Nicola Colyer
15 Sep 2017

You need to watch this video of Judi Dench rapping with Lethal Bizzle

It’s Judi Dizzle and Lethal Bizzle.

by Moya Crockett
15 Sep 2017

Jennifer Aniston is planning a brand-new career

And it's definitely unexpected

by Sarah Biddlecombe
15 Sep 2017