BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - With the discovery of the remains of missing Clark Atlanta University student Alexis Crawford and disappearance of Auburn student Aniah Blanchard, dozens of women met in downtown Birmingham to learn how to defend themselves if attacked.
“Birmingham: Obtain the knowledge that I need to protect my family."
Tonya Jones joined a dozen other women in downtown Birmingham to learn how to look within for protection.
“I’d like to defend myself if I need to," said Jones
That’s the response Jesse Fox of Fox Instructional Services and Training and Women Protection Services says she gets a lot.
”It’s 'I have a gun but now I feel like with the way everything is going. I need to know how to use it,” said Fox.
Fox, a Tampa native, said the class aimed at teaching women situational awareness and skill to protect themselves.
“My No. 1 goal is you walk out of here educated not just on a gun but on the laws - knowing what happens if you have to use something in self-defense,” said Fox.
The class was mostly made up of women of color, an increase in attendance Fox said he noticed after November 2016.
Based on recent murders and disappearances in the Southeast, more women are seeking out ways to fight back.
“I don’t want to be fearful when I go shopping, when I’m out with my son, or wherever I am. I want to be comfortable knowing that I know how to defend myself,” said Jones.
Class participants also got hands-on practice Sunday at Sheepdog Firearms Training Center in Trussville.