Woman wakes up to find intruder in West Chester home
WEST CHESTER, Ohio (WKRC) - A woman woke up and came face-to-face with an intruder in her home in West Chester. And this person may be responsible for more than a dozen break-ins along Mulhauser Road.
West Chester police detectives are stepping up patrols and double checking leads, hoping to put a stop to the string of break-ins.
"I'm terrified; I'm scared to death right now," said Ariel Brown, who scared off the intruder.
Brown had just fallen asleep Friday morning in the bedroom of her Northpoint townhouse. She was suddenly awakened, sensing something was wrong. There was an intruder standing near her bed.
"I jumped up and I looked at him, and I was like 'oh my gosh, you're in my room.' And before I knew it, he just dashed down the stairs and out the back door," she said.
Police believe the suspect broke in through a first-floor window, made his way down the hall and then upstairs. Once scared off, the intruder went out the back door. Brown says the suspect emptied her mother's purse.
"Just shuffled out all these cards right here, just shuffled out of her purse. And nothing was stolen or anything. He was looking for money," said Brown.
West Chester Police say the intruder or intruders have targeted four complexes along Mulhauser Road: Northpoint Townhomes and Meadowridge Apartments as well as the Woodland Hills and Lake Princeton condominium complexes.
"There have been several where a person has been seen in the house, or they have at least heard them in the house. And then a homeowner has gotten up to investigate, and by the time they get to where the offender was, they notice their door's open or their window's open and they've recently left," said Lt. David Tivin with the West Chester Police.
Tivin says the intruder has entered through unlocked windows and doors. Some electronics have been taken but little else. He says people need to do a better job preventing crime, closing blinds and shutters and making sure doors and windows are secure. And if you confront an intruder, he says to be loud, turn the lights on and call 911. Police say they don't want you to confront the intruder.
"That's just something you don't think will happen until it happens," said Brown.
West Chester detectives also say there was an attempted break in at the same complex Friday morning. Fortunately, no one has been hurt in any of these intrusions.
Police believe the suspect may be a teenager.
If you know anything that can help police, call Crimestoppers at 513-352-3040.