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Woman warns others not to walk Rail Trail alone

On her three-block walk home alone in South End, the woman had not one but two horrifying experiences.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — CMPD is patrolling popular walkways and trails from morning to night after a string of attacks in the area. 

A woman told NBC Charlotte she was almost grabbed by someone while walking along the Rail Trail.

This comes a few days after a woman was sexually assaulted and robbed on the Mallard Creek Greenway in the middle of the day. Since then, CMPD has beefed up security for those trails.

RELATED: Woman assaulted, robbed on Charlotte greenway in University area

Tons of millennials live in the apartment complexes along the Rail Trail, and many of them said they don't think twice before walking home from the nearby bars late at night. 

But one woman said doing that alone put her life in danger.

"I have a completely new perspective about the Rail Trail. I wasn't expecting what happened to me to happen right next to where I live,” the woman told NBC Charlotte. 

She’s sharing her story only so others can learn an important lesson.

"You don't want to live in a bubble, but you can't be naïve,” she said.

On her three-block walk home alone in South End, she had not one but two horrifying experiences.

"They grabbed at my thigh. I pushed them off screamed for them to get away from me,” she said. Just a few minutes later, another person was lurking by the end of the steps she was heading down. When she went in another direction, they ran up through the bushes and passed her.

"Getting grabbed or touched like that was scary to begin with because I didn't know where that was going to go and to see another person out of place in that same time frame was scary," she recalled.

There have been crimes along the Rail Trail in the past. Most notably, a man was arrested for rape back in June. Within the last week, a woman said she was sexually assaulted strangled and robbed running along Mallard Creek Greenway.

All of these incidents are putting others on alert.

"I think as women we have to be aware of that, which stinks, but you just have to be safe and be with friends,” said Addie McElwee, who lives in South End.

That will become the new normal for this woman, who wants to warn others to think twice before walking alone. 

"It’s more of an eye-opening experience to walk the same blocks you walk every day in the dark in the night alone definitely does make a difference,” she said.

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