Ohio police have arrested a man who allegedly attacked and tried to rape a pregnant woman as she walked her dog Friday morning.
WXIX reported that the victim, who wished to remain anonymous but agreed to share her photo of the tragic incident, was walking her dog in Cincinnati’s East End when she spotted Anthony Smith, 27. Feeling uneasy, she reportedly crossed the street and walked near a public swimming pool but Smith followed her.
The woman—who is nine months pregnant—claimed she yelled at Smith to stay away from her before she started running. Smith allegedly continued to stalk her before tackling her and attempting to strip her of her clothes while mumbling, “it’s okay, let me do this.”
Smith allegedly battered the pregnant woman as she tried to fight him off. According to Cincinnati.com, a Leblond Recreation Center employee witnessed the attack unfold and alerted Jordan Jones, Michael Wilks, and Asa Smith, three men who were working with special needs children at the pool located nearby.
“When I approached [Anthony Smith], he just stopped, and I kind of paused because I didn’t know if he had a weapon or anything on him, a knife,” Jones said.
Jones told the newspaper that Smith’s brief moment of hesitation gave them the opportunity to tend to the woman and locate her dog while Asa Smith and Wilks took down the suspect.
WXIX noted that, at some point, the dog fled the scene to get help for his distressed owner. The dog was ultimately located and is doing OK.
“Mike grabbed him by his collar, so he wouldn’t run anywhere, and I assisted Mike, like, let’s hold him down the ground,” Asa Smith said.
“Once we saw she was expecting, that made matters even worse.”
Cincinnati.com reported that the victim suffered a fractured nose along with bruising and swelling to her face. Though she requested that her name wasn’t used, she posted pictures to social media showing her extensive facial injuries.
The 27-year-old was charged with felonious assault and attempted rape and is being held on $2 million bond.
Records obtained by the newspaper revealed that Anthony Smith had undergone mental health treatment and had been arrested multiple times in Hamilton County since May 2017. Facing charges ranging from disorderly conduct and assault to possession of drugs and resisting arrest, charges were dismissed on each occasion because he was found incompetent to stand trial.
A 2016 burglary charge in Butler County was also dropped due to his compromised mental state, according to Cincinnati.com.
Despite this, the men said they don’t regret stepping in as they possibly saved the woman and her unborn child’s life. The family told WXIX that both mom and baby are doing alright following the attack.
“It was just the right thing to do. You see somebody who needs help, help them out,”Asa Smith said.
“That’s what we’re all supposed to do as humans in this world, so look out for one another.”
[Featured Image: WXIX; Anthony Smith/Hamilton County jail]