A former Alexandria police officer says she owes her life to the Lyft driver killed last weekend in Prince George’s County.
Suzanne Watts says the killing of Abdul Rauf Khan, 71, was probably the most devastating news she has ever heard.
Khan was honored with a bravery award after stepping in to help Watts when she was being attacked in 2017. She was so badly injured by a man swinging a pipe that she was forced to retire from the department. She said the only reason she’s alive today is because Khan stepped in between her and her attacker.
The news of Khan’s violent death left her stunned.
“No one should have to go through what he did, but of all people in the world that man risked his life for me, and I was a complete stranger, and the fact that no one was there for him is absolutely the most horrific news I have ever received,” Watts said.
Watts responded to a call for a man banging on cars with a pipe in Old Town, and when she got out of her cruiser, she was immediately attacked. Watts said Khan saw what was happening and stepped in.
“He pulled that guy off of me,” she said. “I mean, I was being brutally attacked and sustained multiple head hits. There is no reason I should be alive today, and I thank him for that.”
Months later, the department honored Khan with a courage and bravery award.
“He was a nice guy,” Watts said. “His family was so nice. I remember meeting his daughter and just telling her that, you know, her dad was a hero.”
Khan was shot to death Saturday after picking up a fare in the District. His assailant pushed him out of the car and left him in the street. Police have charged a 17-year-old boy with murder and carjacking.
“I cannot believe that they have to now go through this, because no one should,” Watts said. “His family was so kind, and he was so generous. I’m so sorry to him and his family.” Watts suffered head trauma in the attack. The man who was arrested and charged in the attack is still awaiting trial.
Get updates on what's happening in the D.C. area to your inbox. Sign up for our News Headlines newsletter.