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Samurai-sword wielding Mormon bishop saves woman from stalker attack

Mormon bishop Kent Hendrix has helped his female neighbour escape an attacker by fighting the man off with a Samurai sword.

Mr Hendrix was awoken yesterday morning by his teenage son pounding on the bedroom door and screaming that somebody was being mugged outside their family home in Salt Lake City, Utah.


The father-of-six wasted no time in going to the woman’s rescue, leaping out of bed and grabbing a 29-inch carbon steel Samurai sword which he owned as part for his hobby as a martial arts instructor.


Mr Hendrix said that, upon leaving his house, he led a small group towards the “melee” between a woman and a man and screamed at the attacker to get on the ground.


In a phone interview with AP, Mr Hendrix said: “His eyes got as big as saucers and he kind of gasped and jumped back…He's probably never had anyone draw a sword on him before.“


The man ran down the street with the barefoot Hendrix and others in pursuit. Hendrix said he couldn't catch the man before he fled in his car, but he picked up ChapStick that the man dropped and memorized his license plate.


”I yelled at him, 'I've got your DNA and I've got your license plate: You are so done,'“ Hendrix said.


The suspect, 37-year-old Grant Eggersten, turned himself in to police an hour later, said Unified Police Lt. Justin Hoyal. He was booked on charges of robbery, attempted burglary, trespassing and violation of a stalking injunction.


Hendrix, a pharmaceutical statistician, was one of several neighbours who came to the woman's aid after she began yelling for help, Hoyal said.


The incident began just after 7 a.m. when the 35-year-old woman came out of her front door, Hoyal said. Eggersten was hiding behind her carport and attacked her, knocking her to the ground, Hoyal said.


He took her keys and tried to open the door into her house, Hoyal said. That's when the woman ran down the street calling for help.


The woman did the right thing by fighting back and calling for help, Hoyal said. She suffered minor injuries.


Hendrix, a bishop in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said it was the first time in 30 years of practicing martial arts that he's used the sword. He didn't swing it at the man, only showing him he had it.


He said he's proud of his 14-year-old son for alerting him and quickly calling 911. He said the family is still abuzz about the events.


”That kind of thing doesn't happen every day,“ Hendrix said. ”Our neighbourhood is a pretty quiet place.“


A fourth-degree black belt in the Kishindo form of martial arts, Hendrix owns a collection of swords and weapons that he trains with, said his wife, Suzanne Hendrix. He has trained with the sword he used Tuesday for 20 years and keeps it by his bed.


”Some people have bats they go to,“ said Hendrix. ”I have my sword.“

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