OPELIKA, Ala. (WRBL) – The Lee County Sheriff’s office offered a self-defense program for women at the Bennie G. Adkins CSM Meeting Center.
The Rape Aggression Defense System is a program of realistic self-defense tactics and techniques for women. Participants learned everything from awareness and prevention to hands-on defense training.
Thanks to Sheriff Jay Jones, the program is offered free for all women ages 13 and over.
One student, Janel Nied, decided to take the class with her daughters. Nied works with a ministry called Redeemed Alabama, where she rescues victims of human trafficking. She believes that this class will not only prepare her for any high pressure situations at her job but also empower her daughters in case they ever find themselves in a dangerous situation.
“What you see a lot of times is that women who come in the first night, they’re very scared, very shy, very timid, they don’t speak out,” said Lt. Jessica Daley from the Lee County Sheriff’s Office. “By the last night, they’re not afraid to say no, they’re not afraid to yell no, they’re not afraid to call for help, or call 911.”
The class began with a quick warm-up, and then students stood in a circle to learn the hands-on defense techniques. They then were able to try out these techniques on an instructor. The class is taking place over the course of four days, and the Sheriff’s office hopes women can graduate the class with newfound confidence in their self-defense strategies.
The Sheriff’s office is hoping to offer one more class in the spring and another in the summer.