New York City's a tough town; but New York City's moms? They're even tougher.
Making headlines this week is one such mom, Mary Jane Jarman, who was pushing her 8-month-old along a bike path in Upper Manhattan last Friday when a man crept up over a guardrail and ran toward her with a broken beer bottle.
But he didn't know he was messing with the wrong mama.
"I started screaming and yelling, trying to have someone hear me,” Jarman told the Daily News. “He said, ‘I’m sorry, I’m sick...' He had scary eyes. He was trying to take me behind the wall.”
Though she tried to get away, the man bear-hugged Jarman from behind and the two struggled. In the process, her stroller toppled to the ground, sending her poor 8-month-old, Thane, down with it. He continued to lie there, silent and miraculously unharmed during the entire attack.
Meanwhile, though, Jarman was literally fighting for her life.
“I wasn’t going to go down that way,” she said. “I was going to kill him to protect my son.”
So she bravely grabbed hold of the only thing she had to defend herself: a bike pump, tucked away in the bottom of her jogging stroller.
“My stroller has pump wheels but I always have it with me for protection,” she explained. “I kept hitting him in the head over and over. He got his blood on me. Hopefully he has some nasty gashes.”
Good news is he likely does, considering she hit him with such force that the bike pump split apart into pieces. But because the man ran off once Jarman started fighting back, he was gone by the time authorities arrived, and no witnesses were around to see the attack go down.
Detectives do have some clues to go by, though—the attacker left behind his glasses, a red visor and a bunch of forensic evidence. From what they can tell so far, it's believed the man was looking to sexually assault the young mom, who is now so frightened she can't bring herself to return to the park she used to run through almost daily.
“I don’t want to go there anymore,” Jarman said of the Washington Heights-area bike path. “I’m sad. I love it in the park. It’s the closest we get to nature in New York City.” Still, she told DNAInfo New York she'll be finding a new route to walk; though next time she'll be armed with pepper spray.