MUSKOGEE, Oklahoma - Muskogee Police are taking steps to help women better protect themselves from violence. The Department is putting on self-defense classes and the first was held Monday evening. 

The Department had its defensive tactic instructors teach the two-hour long class. Those instructors usually train new police officers on how to defend themselves but tonight they were showing local women a few moves just in case they need to use them.

“Hopefully we don't get in that situation but if we do we will at least know what to do now,” said Alyssa Sanchez.

Alyssa Sanchez signed up for the training along with her two younger sisters Sara and Lara. They say their dad encouraged them to go through the training, but the knowledge they gained can help them in many ways.

"What would you do to prepare, and what you would do if you got in a bad situation," said Lara.

Throughout the class, women were able to learn the basics of self-defense like how to throw a strike, escape a hold, and some other basic moves that women can use if they or someone they know ever needs to get away from an attacker.

"Obviously women have to face a lot more than men as far as the risk of being assaulted," said Muskogee Officer Jarad Forbes.

According to the Muskogee Police Department, 391 domestic assault cases were filed with DA in the city of Muskogee in 2018. Officers say they wanted to do this to bring awareness to how close to home these situations can be.

"We saw a video online that was touting women's self-defense and it was very bad advice so we wanted to get some good advice out there to our community," said Forbes.

Officer Forbes says they hope these women never have to use the moves they learned tonight, but now at least they will know how to get away.

"We're not looking to train them to win a fight, we are training them to get out of a fight and get help from there," said Forbes.

The Department scheduled three of these training sessions last year and so far this is the first one scheduled for this year. But you can keep an eye on their Facebook page for any other upcoming sessions in the future.