Traveling alone on public transit can carry with it certain risks, particularly if no one else is around.
Andrea Puerta of Miami, Florida recently shared a brutal interaction she experienced on a Metromover in her home city that took place on September 4th, 2020. The culprit, Joshua James King, entered the cart and upon verifying that he was alone with her, proceeded to brutally physically assault Andrea. The aftermath left her with a black eye, broken rib, and swollen jaw, amongst other injuries.
The attack lasted over 40 seconds during which King struck her over twenty times and threw her around the cart. Once the cart came to a halt, he ceased the attack and abandoned the scene so as to not draw attention to him self from the authorities. He was later arrested, during which time police found evidence that he had brutally beaten two other individuals on public transit that same day before making his escape.
Rener Gracie did not mince his words on Facebook in sharing this Gracie Breakdown, simply stating “Blood boiling” in posting his video retort.
Even in learning self-defense, situations like this bring to light the situational nature of certain attacks that one may not prepare for in a martial arts academy. Andrea was sitting on a train alone and although the attack seemed to come out of nowhere, the closed quarter nature of the train car added a complex wrinkle to her ability to escape. The train was moving, there was no one else in the cart, and there was nowhere to run for help. In the video, Rener proposes that in such a situation where keeping a measurable distance from you and an attacker appears to be next to impossible, it would behoove the victim to close the distance and establish a clinch for as long as possible.
Forty seconds is enough time to cause serious damage, luckily she was able to come out of the attack alive. Additionally, Rener states in the video that the Gracie University is willing to sponsor her for a free lifetime membership to the Valente Brother’s Jiu-Jitsu academy in Miami, a school that is directly aligned with the Helio Gracie teaching methodology and geared first and foremost towards developing self-defense skills and awareness.
While this attack is hard to watch and cause for public scrutiny given the fact that King was able to post bail and has since been released from custody awaiting trial despite being a repeat offender, if it can bring practical awareness to the masses as Andrea intended in sharing the video, it will do a great service.