Jogger Attacked in Central Park Awakes, Speaks

From Associated Press

A jogger who was beaten and raped in Central Park has emerged from her two-week coma, spoken to relatives and expressed a desire to resume running, doctors said Wednesday.

“I think we have some pretty good news,” said Robert S. Kurtz, assistant chief of surgery at Metropolitan Hospital.

Kurtz and Kent Duffy, chief of neurosurgery, said the 28-year-old woman began responding Tuesday and had spoken in a whisper to relatives and staff members, raised two fingers when asked to do so and was able to read large signs printed with yes, no and her name.


When a nurse told the patient Tuesday that she would like to resume jogging, the patient replied, “Me, too,” Kurtz said.

On Tuesday, Kurtz said, the woman’s brother “walked into her room and said, ‘Can you say hello?’ And she said hello. There’s definite recognition” of her relatives.

The woman, an investment banker, was on her regular jog through Central Park the night of April 19 when a gang of youths attacked her. Six teen-agers have been indicted on charges of attempted murder, rape, sodomy and assault.

By the time she was found, hours later, she had lost three-fourths of her blood and her temperature had fallen to 80 degrees, officials said.

“She has been emerging gradually over the last couple of days or three days,” Kurtz said. “We would still say . . . she is in a delirium. People in this stage will fluctuate.”

When hospital staff flashed the signs and she responded, “three or four people started clapping. I was one of them,” Kurtz said.