Indianapolis woman attacked with a hatchet hopes to inspire others with survival story

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind (Sep. 18, 2015)--An Indianapolis woman attacked by an ax in the middle of the night survived to tell her story.

She’s sharing a strong message for all women who may find themselves in an abusive relationship.

"I looked up and there he was with this hatchet and I covered my face and he just came down and came down and I could start to feel my body convulse," said Autumn Lopez.

At first glance, you cannot tell that it has been just two weeks since Lopez was violently attacked with an ax. While she is still in a great deal of pain, Lopez says she is thankful to be alive.

"That makes this entire ordeal worth it if I can help at least one person. If I can help one person it makes all the pain worth it," said Lopez.

Lopez finally built up the courage to break off her turbulent ten-year relationship with Severiano Diaz-Ortiz. He is now wanted for attempted murder.

"He was emotionally and verbally abusive. A good day for me was when he didn't say something mean or cruel," said Lopez.

Police and Lopez say Diaz-Ortiz broke into her home and brutally sliced her with an ax. Lopez says her recently-rescued dog started growling and may have saved her life.

"She’s a hero she saved my life. If it wasn't for her there’s no reason he would stop hitting me," said Lopez.

While the exteriors scars will certainty heal, the emotional bleeding is raw for Lopez.

"If you are in an abusive relationship or violent relationship, get help before something bad happens," said Lopez.

"We are working on a higher demand on our center than ever before," said Terry Moore. Moore is the executive director of the Beacon of Hope Center for Women. She is also a domestic violence survivor.

"It usually takes a woman seven times before she is ready to leave and get that courage to get up and get help," said Moore.

Moore says she is constantly fielding phone calls from women in need and the demand on shelters is high.

"Domestic violence shelters are struggling financially, and we need everyone to help because we can't do this alone," said Moore.

While Lopez is on the road to recovery, she says that she will never fully rebound until Diaz-Ortiz is held responsible.

"If he had ever loved me, Then I would like him to turn himself in and plead guilty so I wont have to live through a court trial," said Lopez.

There are a number of resources available if you find yourself in an abusive relationship.

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