RENTON, Wash. - According to her family, 23-year-old Kiersten Shideler not only survived having her throat slashed by a robber, her father says his daughter also courageously gathered herself to call 911 even though she was bleeding profusely and couldn't even speak.
"I'm so proud of her," Mark Shideler said from his daughter's bedside in Harborview Medical Center's ICU. "I can't believe she still had the wherewithal to do what she did and dial 911."
Renton police told KIRO 7 that Shideler was working alone in the GameStop store in Renton when 44-year-old Darren Gayles captured on store surveillance robbing Shideler at knife point.
Police said Gayles ordered Shideler to empty the till, then he slit her throat after she cooperated with him.
Investigators got a break when Gayles was caught on camera again at the Renton Transit Center after changing his clothes and uncovering his face. He was still wearing the scarf.
According to charging documents, police got a tip that Gayles was staying at the Creston Point Apartments in the 13400 block of MLK Jr Way near Renton.
He was staying with a former co-worker.
Gayles chose not to attend his court appearance Thursday afternoon. He’s held for investigation of attempted murder and robbery.
According to investigators Gayles confessed to the attack, he told them he is schizophrenic and was not taking his medicine when he attacked Shideler.
After the suspect left Shideler collapsed and bleeding, a GameStop store manager happened to walk into the store and helped her until paramedics arrived, according to Shideler's family.
"Luckily that other manager pretty much saved her life," said Mark Shideler. "Otherwise she would have been all alone."
Shideler told KIRO 7 he can't believe the suspect slit his daughter's throat after she agreed to give him the cash he demanded.
"He still had the density to do something like that," Shideler said. "I just don't understand how another human being can ever be that way."
Shideler says his daughter is getting an outpouring of support from friends he never knew she had.
"She's such a wonderful, wonderful girl. She's such a unique individual; she's got a heart of gold. Her friends love her so dearly. We're amazed at how many dear friends we've got," Shideler said.
Gayles is being held in psych housing at the jail. His bail will be set on Thursday.