JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. -- A sexual assault victim is sharing her story of survival. Police say she was beaten and assaulted early Friday morning on First Avenue North in Jacksonville Beach by a military sailor.
"He had his hand on my mouth. That's where all the scratches come from. He was banging my head into the concrete trying to knock me out," recalled MacKenzie Worthley.
It's something she can't erase from her mind. She says she was riding her skateboard when navy sailor Edward Marshall-Byrd asked for directions.
"I just pointed and said 'Mayport's that way' and I'm still continuing motion. Three seconds go by and I hear footsteps behind me and he grabs me by the back of my head and pulls me off my skateboard," she said.
Police say he threw her to the ground and sexually assaulted her. Worthley says she fought back against Marshall-Byrd for ten minutes.
"I saw myself as a dead body and i did not have that, I wasn't going to have that," she said.
"It's not going to be like an MMA fight where you square off fairly and the ref says go. It's going to be totally unorthodox and unfair," said Ryan Hamner.
Hamner is a self defense instructor. He says there are three key areas to target against an attacker: the throat, the groin and the eyes.
"If you can gouge the eyes, poke the eyes, you're going to blind your opponent and it's very painful," Hamner said. "It's good to scream and bring all the attention to yourself that you can."
Worthley says she screamed the entire time. Finally someone heard her and stopped to help. She says her fight saved her life. But she wants other women to know it can happen to anyone.
"I'm not ashamed. I'm grateful that he did not succeed at what he set out to do and I'm alive to tell the tail," Worthley said.
Marshall-Byrd is still behind bars. He's currently stationed at Naval Station Mayport as part of the USS Halyburton. We're told he will likely face additional charges through the military.
If you'd like lessons in self defense, contact Hamner at 706-315-7934 or visit his website