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British teacher talks attacker out of killing her

April 12, 2013 at 12:01 PM

NOTTINGHAM, England, April 12 (UPI) -- A quick-thinking British teacher says she managed to avoid becoming an attacker's second victim by asking for a cigarette and engaging him in small talk.

Jessica Price even got her assailant to give her his phone number and later testified against him, The Daily Telegraph reported Friday.

Price, 23, was walking home alone from a bar in Nottingham about 3 a.m. in August 2011 when Carl Powell, 24, grabbed her from behind, began choking her and dragged her into an isolated area where he pushed her to the ground.

When Powell took his hands off her, Price told her attacker she wouldn't make a sound and talked him into sitting down next to her.

She asked for a drag off his cigarette and got him to talk "to convince him everything was fine."

Eventually, Price got him to drop his hood so she could see his face. They walked down the road, him holding her hand.

"We even exchanged numbers, so he didn't think anything was wrong and I told him I'd see him around" as they parted, she recounted.

Price ran home and called police, who later told her Powell had killed a 28-year-old woman a month earlier.

Powell was convicted of murder and assault in October 2012, with Price a key witness. He is serving a life sentence in prison.

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