In a deeply disturbing incident, authorities were shocked to find a young woman, 19, in front of a church with both her eyes in her hands, according to several reports.
Witnesses told reporters that the woman, who has not been identified by officers because she has not been charged with a crime, was screaming terribly even as she gouged out one of her eyes on the railway tracks in front of Anderson County’s local church in South Carolina.
Elizabeth Hiott, who works at the South Main Chapel, suddenly heard screaming voices from outside, with one witness urging her to call 911 immediately.
Hiott ran out to see what was happening, and what she witnessed was simply terrifying and, as she says, completely “crazy,” according to WYFF. The 911 dispatchers asked her what the trouble was, and when Hiott told them a young woman was attempting to gouge out her eyes in front of the church in broad daylight, it left even them confused and in disbelief.
“It was across the street, and I could see blood, and could hear her screaming, and I realized something was wrong. Something was terribly wrong.
“I immediately called 911 and it almost felt like the 911 dispatcher didn’t even believe me. That’s how crazy it was.”
— Cleveland 19 News (@cleveland19news) February 7, 2018
The horrified locals, many of them attending the local church, tried to stop the young woman from gouging her eyes out, but she restrained and fought with them, continuing her horrific act of self-mutilation. Officers arrived soon, but by then, the woman had gouged out both her eyeballs, reports Patch, and she was holding them in her hands.
Anderson County Sheriff Chad McBride told reporters that it took three deputies and two emergency medical workers to subdue the young woman before they could start rendering aid. Once she was subdued, the woman was carried to a hospital in a medical helicopter, where she remains in ICU but is reportedly stable.
Churchgoers said that they have seen the woman a few times near the church, but they don’t know her well because she does not attend regularly. The local community is understandably shocked after the incident, and witnesses were provided with a counseling session at the church to be able to get through the horrific episode.
The local sheriff’s office is refusing to comment more on the matter until they find out more details, but they have not ruled out the role of drugs in helping precipitate the incident.