EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSCHESAPEAKE HOME INVASIONS
from Eyewitness News Online
Small Town Home Invasions Targeting The Elderly
Reported by: Leslie Rubin
Videographer: Troy Morgan
Web Producer: Leslie Rubin
Reported: Jun. 21, 2012 10:36 PM EDT
Updated: Jun. 21, 2012 10:44 PM EDT
Chesapeake , Kanawha County , West Virginia
A small town in Kanawha County is plagued with fear after a rash of home invasions that are apparently targeting the elderly.
Neighbors say over the last several months, more than a dozen break-ins have happened in and around Chesapeake.
"It was frightening. It really was. It was frightening," said Alma Burgess.
She's lived at her Chesapeake home for almost 30 years. Three decades of feeling safe and secure, until early Saturday morning.
"I went to sleep, and about, I think it was about 1:20 in the morning, I got woken up and there was a man standing in my bedroom," she recalled.
She says the man ripped off the screen of her front porch window, broke the lock, and climbed inside.
"I looked at him and I said, 'what are you doing?' and he ran. He ran out my front door," said Burgess.
He got away with her purse, but also took her sense of security. Her story is becoming all too common for the tiny town with more than a dozen reports of the same types of crimes. A bold bandit that comes in the middle of the night, stealing mostly cash, and focusing mainly on a four block stretch in the middle of Chesapeake.
"I've been there for 17 years by myself and this is the first time this has ever, ever happened," said John Fry, another victim.
Fry slept through the burglary in his home, but now sleeps beside a loaded shotgun.
"I know the good book says I shall not kill, but who's life is it? Either mine or going to be somebody else's," he said.
"They deserve the right, above all of us to have the peace and quiet, comfort of home, and these people are taking it away from them," said Alma Burgess' son, Tom Burgess.
He's working to catch the perp, hoping police can better patrol the area late at night, and asking neighbors to keep a watchful eye.
"When you have things like this, it's usually not addressed until someone gets hurt or killed. Nobody wants that," he said.
Many people in and around Chespeake are planning on attending a town council meeting on July 2nd to address the problems, and see what they can do to get more police protection, or perhaps start a neighborhood watch.
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