A glamorous TV presenter was beaten black and blue by a complete stranger who tried to rape her in a train carriage.
Anastasia Lugova’s six-year-old son witnessed the savage assault, leaving him severely traumatised.
Anastasia, 28, was assaulted on a train journey from the Ukrainian city of Mariupol to the capital city of Kyiv, on Friday.
The woman and her son Zakhar were sleeping in their compartment when a man, wearing only his underpants, broke in at around three in the morning.
Anastasia told local media: ”I woke up after he grabbed me by the neck and started punching me in the face.”
She continued: ”I started screaming and calling for help but no one came.
”He then said: ‘Be a good girl or it will be worse’, and started undressing me.
According to Anastasia, the noise woke up her son, who saw what was going on and burst into tears.
When the attacker turned to the boy with an obvious intent to hit him, the mother did everything she could to protect her child.
She said: ”I started begging the thug not to hurt my son and promised to do everything he wanted.
”I asked him to go somewhere else to get him away from my son.
”He agreed and ordered me to go to his compartment.’’
Anastasia was bundled towards a sleeping compartment booked by fellow-passenger Vitaliy Rudzko, 45, who has since been arrested on charges of battery and attempted rape.
After they entered Rudzko’s compartment and her assailant started taking off his underpants, Anastasia pushed him and rushed back to her son.
She said: ”I grabbed Zakhar and we ran to the conductor, who hid us in her compartment.
”Meanwhile, the thug was running around the carriage covered only into a sheet while looking for us.”
The train crew seized Rudzko and handed him to the police as soon as the train arrived in Kyiv.
Law enforcement launched a criminal case for battery and attempted rape against the man, who was taken in custody.
He faces up to eight years in prison if found guilty. The investigation continues.
Anastasia was hospitalised with severe bruises to her face and all over her head.
The host told her story on her social media urging people not to be indifferent to those who call for help.
Her son Zakhar is receiving counselling following the horrific experience.
Anastasia said: ”My son cannot stop crying and constantly repeats: ‘Mom, forgive me for not protecting you’.”