HOUSTON – A teenage girl walking home from school was nearly abducted by two men in southwest Houston Tuesday afternoon. The girl, 17, fought off her attackers.
“If I didn’t do what I did, I wouldn’t be here,” said Teara Ketchum, the victim.
Ketchum is used to swinging bats for Madison High School’s softball team. On Tuesday, swinging a tote bag may have saved her life.
“I couldn’t (and) wouldn’t be able to explain the feeling,” Ketchum said. “I wouldn’t want anyone going through what I had to go through.”
She left school early and walked home following her mom’s safety rules.
“I had her call me before she leaves school, call me when (she) gets to the corner, call me when (she) gets to the house,” Michelle Kinchen said of her daughter.
Teara was attacked a few blocks from school.
“The (gold) van pulled up and I don’t even think I hung up the phone all the way,” Ketchum said.
A man wearing a hoody jumped out. He pulled Teara so hard her polo shirt ripped down the middle. So Teara fought back.
“I was holding my bag and I just started swinging it,” Ketchum said.
Her attacker fell, then jumped back into his van. The driver sped away. Teara took off running out of sight until she felt safe.
“I feel violated,” her mom said. “I feel hurt. I feel scared.”
The principal at Madison is warning other students and parents to be alert.
“We send them to school to get an education,” Kinchen said. “We pray that they are safe, but they really leave out that door in God’s hands, and it was by the grace of God that her life was spared yesterday.”
“Knowing that there are people out there that would do something like this changed my perspective about a lot of stuff,” Teara said.
Police are still looking for the attacker.