Women in central Arkansas are learning how to protect themselves against intruders and people who want to harm them. In less than two weeks, three Little Rock women have been killed. This violence is prompting more women to fight back.
Susan Desselle is learning how to protect herself with a gun. "I don't feel as safe here and I'm out and about all the time and I don't want to be a victim," says Desselle.
"They're buying the stun guns, they're buying pepper spray, they're buying a hand gun," says Don Hill, owner of Donís Weaponry. Hill says in past two weeks, interest from women is up 80 percent. "Well they're scared. You know, they're concerned and rightly so. A lot of them live by themselves and are working individuals. As a result the only thing they have laying around the house is a fire poker and they need something to protect them," Hill says.
Hill tells us itís important to do more than just a background check before selling a gun. ďA gun can be as dangerous in the hands of someone who doesn't know how to use as it is to the person that they're using against. If you don't know how to use one, don't buy one. We'll send them down to our range, let them use some guns, find out what they're most comfortable with,Ē says Hill.
Desselle is taking the concealed handgun license course at Don's Weaponry to legally carry a gun with her and be educated. "It's scary to go through a class and think about a specific incident that you might encounter that they tell you about and how scared you would be, but it's better than the alternative which is not to be prepared at all."
Other women, like UCA student Holly Hennenberger, are taking self defense classes at Little Rock Martial Arts. "The whole Anne Pressly thing and the shooting at my school, [I'm just] just scared," says Hennenberger.
Michelle Ray teaches the seminar and says the key to defending yourself is awareness and knowledge. ďIf they know what a predator is looking for in a victim, then I've armed them with the best part of self defense,Ē says Ray, owner of Little Rock Martial Arts.
"I've been pumped since this morning, ready to kick some butt," says Hennenberger.
"Just the fact that we are a female makes us the victim. We are perceived as being weak, we are perceived as being vulnerable. That's what a predator is looking for an easy target," Ray says.
Thatís what Ray hopes to change.
Little Rock Martial Arts will have another free self-defense seminar Nov. 8 at 2pm. For more information visit MartialArtsLittleRock.com.
For more information on concealed handgun courses, call Donís Weaponry 501-945-6188.