UPDATE: Bike trail stabbing victim released from the hospital - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UPDATE: Bike trail stabbing victim released from the hospital

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Blake Houser Blake Houser

Waterloo Police have arrested a man for stabbing a jogger at George Wyth State Park. Police said 19-year-old Blake Houser of Waterloo faces charges of willful injury, going armed with intent and carrying weapons in Monday's attack.

Police say Houser admitted to riding past 25-year-old Paige King on the bike trail and stabbing her in the shoulder. According to police, Houser said he was mad about an unrelated event.

Police said King was able to get away from her attacker. She made it to the Krieg's Crossing bridge in Cedar Falls where emergency crews met her. She was taken to the hospital where she was treated for her stab wound and released.

Police have also charged Houser in an attack on the bike trail near Sergeant Road on July 14, 2011. In that case, 27-year-old Andrea Slade reported jogging and being hit by someone while they rode past on a bike. Police say Houser admitted he tried to stab Slade, but only hit her. In the 2011 assault, Houser is charged with assault while using or displaying a weapon, assault with intent to cause serious injury, carrying weapons and going armed with intent.

Paige King contacted us Tuesday afternoon.  She says she appreciates everyone's love and support.  She also says she has never felt so blessed and she appreciates life now more than ever.

Monday's seemingly random attack raised concern from those who use the trail system which spans about 80 miles across the Cedar Valley.

Scott Gall, who co-owns Runner's Flat in Cedar Falls, leads a group on an-off trail run starting from Pfeiffer Park in Cedar Falls every Monday. He said the attack at George Wyth State Park serves as a reminder to those who use the trails.

"What we encourage is pepper spray or a pocketknife or both, honestly, especially if it's a female. My wife runs a lot of mornings by herself. She's had a lot of training in self-defense and carries knife clips in her shorts," Gall said.

Runners, joggers, cyclists, and others who use the trails said they're a community treasure where peace and quiet and occasionally another exerciser are found.

Austin Tegels and Katie Dolan ran together Monday.

"Usually before I go for a run, I'll call somebody or text them. Let them know that I'm headed out. Otherwise, I love running with people like Austin or friends in the area," Dolan said.

Gall said the enjoyment of a quiet run has taken a hit after Monday's attack.

"The shame of a situation like today is that people for years here used this section of trail and felt like one, it was well-traveled so there was always people out here and two, it is a safe environment normally," Gall said.

He said it's also a good idea to bring along your cell phone when you're on the trail. There are even markers along the trail at George Wyth State Park to help emergency crews find you if you need help.

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