Hate crime? Mom of four on morning jog chased down by a man with an axe: ‘Wanted to chop me to pieces’.

PHOENIX, AZ – A mother of four was going for a morning jog earlier in February when she claimed that a man appeared out of the bushes while wielding an axe and began to chase her down.

Luckily, a woman driving nearby let the victim jump into her car and police have since arrested the suspect alleged to be the assailant.

Here are the details behind this harrowing experience.

Gina Hopkins-Calligan was jogging not far from 7th Avenue and Maryland in Phoenix at approximately 7:00 a.m. one morning in February when the suspect, later identified as 25-year-old Joshua Eicher, jumped out of the bushes with an axe raised above his head.

According to Hopkins-Calligan, Eicher started to run toward her, prompting her to immediately turn the opposite direction and run away from the axe-wielding suspect.

She said:

“He definitely had that look in the eye that I’m going to kill you… It was extremely terrifying. I kept thinking it was a nightmare I couldn’t wake up from.”

The victim believes that had she not reacted as quickly as she did, Eicher would’ve killed her, saying:

“I think if I would have waited one more second, he would have gotten me… I just told myself keep running faster, as fast as fast as far as you can.”

Looking back on the entire ordeal, Hopkins-Calligan can’t help but acknowledge that she must have “looked like a crazy person,” as she was fleeing from her pursuer:

“He was just screaming. He was galloping at me with the axe, like this just ready to chop me to pieces, he looked determined to kill me. I was just screaming, waving my arms. I probably looked like a crazy person.”

While fleeing from the suspect, Hopkins-Calligan happened to track down a woman in a car who allowed her to get inside the vehicle and call the police:

“It turned out to be an angel on earth, and she let me into her car, and we called 911.”

That “angel on earth” would later be identified as Emily Register, who was on her way to class the morning of the incident.

She said:

“I saw an altercation. It was dark, so I wanted to make sure she was OK, so I turned right here and met her, asked if she was OK. She said no. So she got in the car, and we called 911.”

Even though Hopkins-Calligan gives credit to Register for helping save her life, Register thinks the majority of the credit belongs to Hopkins-Calligan due to her literally being quick on her feet:

“She absolutely saved herself, I would say. She’s a very fast runner.”

When Phoenix Police searched the area where the incident took place, they reportedly found Eicher nearby and say that the suspect was in possession of a hatchet when he was taken into custody.

Police say that the alleged attack appears to have been random, while also citing that Eicher is a local vagrant with a history of drug use.

With Hopkins-Calligan having survived the dangerous encounter herself, she also expressed worry about a ‘what-if’ scenario where it was someone else targeted that wasn’t as physically capable of moving as quickly as her.

She said:

“It’s scary to think what if that were not me? What if that were an elderly person who could not run away from him?”

The suspect has since been booked into jail under charges of assault with a deadly weapon.

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In other cases coming out of Arizona, Border Patrol agents recently apprehended a group of Iranians reportedly illegally crossing into Arizona via the U.S.-Mexico border earlier in February. 

Here’s that previous report. 


ARIZONA– Illegal aliens crossing the border from Mexico into the United States has been a continuous problem over the years. Former President Donald Trump intended to combat that problem by building a wall along the border, which angered many Democrats and liberals. 

Since taking office, President Joe Biden has halted the construction of the wall, and has yet to make a decision on if he will let the current wall remain in place. 

Many immigrants have associated Joe Biden’s presidency with an open door policy on immigration. 

On Monday evening, February 1st, U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested 11 Iranian citizens after they crossed the U.S.-Mexico border in Arizona, Fox News reported

According to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, around 6 p.m. Yuma Sector Border Patrol agents encountered the group near San Luis, a city in the southwest corner of Arizona, near County 21st Street and the Salinity Canal.

Agents determined the group, which consisted of five females and six males, had entered the U.S. illegally from Mexico. Agents arrested the group and took them into custody. 

The Customs and Border Protection has said that Yuma Sector agents regularly encounter people from all over the world crossing the border illegally, including people from “Special Interest Countries.”

In the last few years, Border Patrol agents at the Yuma Sector have apprehended more illegal crossers from Iran than all other Border Patrol sectors combined. Since October, Yuma Sector agents have apprehended 14 Iranian nationals. Fox News reported.

It is reported that the way Joe Biden’s administration is viewed by immigrants, along with disastrous hurricanes that hit Central America, immigration scholars say they expect a wave of people from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador to try to cross the U.S.-Mexico border this year. 

Andrew Selee, president of the nonpartisan Migration Policy Institute, wrote in November in Americas Quarterly magazine:

“Heading north will continue to be seen as an option,”

He went on to say:

“President-elect Joe Biden has promised to do things differently, treating migrants and asylum-seekers with dignity.”

Selee warned that sudden policy changes could encourage would-be border-crossers to flood north.


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Author: Gregory Hoyt

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