A video taken from a “nanny camera” went viral on the internet last week. In the video you can see a burglar beating a New Jersey woman inside her living room with her horrified child laying on the couch only a few feet away.
The Harrington family who lives off East Highway 338 in Erath had an experience similar to the New Jersey invasion, when a heavyset black male broke through their backdoor last Friday and was scared off by a member of their family.
“My dog was growling, so I got up and came running to see what was going on and I saw the man at the door,” says a member of the Harrington family that has chosen to stay anonymous.
She says she was home the morning of the break in. Her father left to visit her mother in Lafayette around 9:30 a.m. She declined to go with him and only a few minutes later she got the surprise of her life.
“I thought it was my dad trying to open the door or something I didn't think someone would come into our house like that,” she says.
It was a situation her father, Syl Harrington, says could have been much worse.
“A 14-year-old girl, I mean he could have killed her or he could have raped her—anything. I'm proud of her cause she told him to get out and she stood up and didn't really panic or start crying or anything,” says Harrington.
The man immediately left after confronting Harrington's daughter, so it's ruled an attempted unlawful entry—not a home invasion, like in New Jersey. The reason being it's obvious the man didn't think Harrington's daughter was home.
According to the Vermilion Parish Sheriff's Office, home invasions are extremely rare. There have been none in the last three years.
But, in any case, there are a few guidelines The Sheriff's Office says you should follow to deter intruders, including not talking about your valuables; not letting it look or sound like your house is empty; preventing access to upstairs windows or doors by pruning and not making your routine obvious to strangers.
That last tip Harrington found out the hard way.
“I'm sure they were scoping me out and they probably were scoping me out for a long time. See when I leave on Fridays or whatever, because I was leaving on Fridays at a certain time,” says Harrington.