'Booby Trap' Bras Selling Fast After Joggers Murdered

The sports bras can hide various gear to help women running alone defend themselves against potential threats.

Published Aug 8, 2016

Krista Garza (CBS DFW)
Krista Garza (CBS DFW)

Sales of a sports bra that hides a knife pocket soared in the first weeks of August 2016, after two women in the northeastern United States were murdered during afternoon runs.

The bras, known as "Booby Traps," have pouches where joggers can store knives, stun guns or pepper spray. The bra's inventor wrote that she came up with the idea after getting attacked while she was out jogging:

I walked around thinking life was all rainbows and butterflies until I was jumped out at on a local running trail.  I was in active wear and had no form of protection on me.  The little pocket knives I had collected over the years were all at home in the drawer with my pepper spray. I needed something I could pull in less than a second.

We came up with the idea to sew a knife sheath inside my sports bra and used that home-made prototype to file a patent.  From there, we received a whirl-wind of support from family, friends, retail stores and manufacturers…  Our distributors and partners are the best in the business.

The body of Vanessa Marcotte, a 27-year-old Google account manager, was found on 7 August 2016, near her mother's home in Princeton, Massachusetts. The tech employee was visiting her mother in the small town from New York City. According to Boston news outlet WCVB, her death is being investigated as a homicide.

Nearly a week before, Karina Vetrano was dragged off a running trail, then raped and murdered:

Vetrano, 30, left for her her daily run at about 5 p.m. on a trail in Spring Creek Park, part of a recreation area that's adjacent to her home in the Howard Beach neighborhood, police said. Normally, the victim ran with her father, but he stayed home because of a bad back, they said.

The father, retired firefighter Philip Vetrano, "asked her not to run this path, not without him," NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said Tuesday at a briefing near the scene of the crime. "If you're a runner you understand that you run every night as part of your routine, so she went, and said she'd be all right."

The creator of the "Booby Trap" bra told the New York Post that sales of the sports bra are up significantly: 

“I keep getting orders from New Yorkers, pinging my phone. At first I was thinking, ‘What’s going on?’ Then I read the story about her. And I got sick to my stomach,” she said.

The running bras retail for about $55 each. Guns, knives, pepper spray, and other items that might go into the bras are sold separately.

Bethania Palma is a journalist from the Los Angeles area who has been working in the news industry since 2006.

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