How a Family of Taekwondo Instructors Stopped a Sexual Assault

Simon An had just arrived with his parents, his older sister and his younger brother at his family’s taekwondo school in Katy, Texas, on Tuesday afternoon when they heard a scream so loud it reminded him of a horror movie.

That was when the An family, all of whom are taekwondo instructors, sprang into action and stopped a sexual assault at the business next door, delivering the attacker to the police.

Sheriff Ed Gonzalez of Harris County confirmed the account in a post on Facebook and thanked the An family, calling them “a group of good Samaritans.”

Alex Robinson, 19, faces a felony charge of attempted sexual assault in connection with the attack, according to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

“By utilizing their training and discipline, they managed to stop the assault and hold him” until the police arrived, Sheriff Gonzalez said of the An family.

At around 4 p.m. Tuesday, the An family arrived at the Yong-In Tae Kwon Do school to prepare for evening classes. They were still in the parking lot when Han and Hong An, the parents, heard a high-pitched scream from the business next door, according to the oldest son, Simon An, 20.

Moments earlier, Han An had seen a man and a woman inside the store who appeared to be hugging. But when he looked again, he couldn’t see anything, and he thought maybe it was all horseplay, Simon An said.

As the family opened the dojang, or school, they all heard a loud, “horror movie scream,” Simon An said. The Ans rushed next door, but no one was inside. Sensing something was wrong, Han An opened the door to what Simon An said was the employees’ room in the back of the store, where he saw a man on top of a woman, covering her mouth with his hand.

“My dad just sprung in,” Simon An said. “He didn’t care if he had a weapon, or what harm he could do to my dad. He just kind of yanked him out.”

Han An, 59, grabbed the attacker by his shirt collar, pulled him out of the employees’ room and pinned him into a corner of the store, Simon An said. The attacker scratched, bit and punched Han An, according to Simon An. The two men were about the same size, and Han An used his body weight to hold the attacker down for 10 minutes until the police arrived, Simon An said.

Simon An ensured that the attacker didn’t get up or hurt his father and that all the exits were closed. His mother, his sister and an associate from another nearby store who had called 911 for them took the victim to the taekwondo school, Simon An said.

According to Sheriff Gonzalez’s Facebook post, deputies arrived to find that “instructors from the Yong-In Tae Kwon Do dojo had a male pinned to the ground.” The instructors heard yelling next door and “observed a male attempting to sexually assault a female,” the post said.

“They were able to pull the female away from her attacker,” he wrote. “The male then turned to attack the good samaritans.”

The attacker is being held on $100,000 bond at the Harris County jail and is scheduled to appear in court Friday, according to the sheriff’s office.

Simon An said his family had started the taekwondo school 17 years ago. He began learning at age 4, and every member of his family is an instructor, he said. His father has an eighth-degree black belt.

His father has always instilled in him respect for others and the importance of discipline and self-control.

If you have power, “use that power to protect people,” Simon An said.

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