By Nakisha Horne
At 11:30 p.m. on September 9, at an attempted break-in occurred at my home. We have all seen movies with traumatic break-ins that filled us with fear. For many, the idea of someone coming into your home while you’re there is our worst nightmare. It’s pretty terrifying, though, to wake up in the middle of the night and realize someone is trying to get inside your home — and one can’t exactly read a burglar’s mind to know his or her intentions.
I had no idea who this man was outside of my home and running back and forth between me and my neighbors’ home. While I was on the phone with the dispatcher, she asked questions from what is my name? What is my address? What is my phone number? What is the state of my emergency? I calmly answered all of her questions, but my thought was to get out of the house and run.
As I went back to grab my keys, the dispatcher asked if I could give her a description of the suspect. So, I started to walk back up to the front door, look out the peep hole and gave her the information from what he looked like to what he was wearing. In just a matter of seconds he walked back up the stairs and he started to kick in my front door. The only thing I could do at that moment was to lean my body into the door and hope the police show up.
I remember yelling “STOP” and he just kept going until he ran out of breath. The police arrived just in time as he still stood outside in front of my home.
Little did I know this could have been prevented, because my neighbors watched the entire time and never thought to call the police, but found it odd to see this man outside of my home.
Remember if you see something strange, say something and call 911.
I learned that prevention is key, such as installing a home security system with monitoring if you can. That said, there are simple steps you can take to prepare for the worst in the event you find yourself home while someone is attempting to break into your home.
For me, the right choice was one that involved cameras, that way, I could keep an eye on all my doors and windows throughout my home. I bought two twenty dollar cameras off Amazon to go inside the front and back windows and I also have ADT for an alarm system.
It was enough to make me feel secure in my home and allowed me to check-in on things when I was away. It also allows me to look at who is there, even if I’m not home with a free downloadable app right on my phone. It’s an added comfort that I didn’t expect would come in so handy, but it has.
Before a break-in occurs have a plan. How will you get out? If you can’t get out, then where is your safe place? Check to see does everyone’s bedroom door lock from the inside. Consider also putting a lock on the inside of a closet, such as a deadbolt. Charge your cell phone and make sure it’s either close to your bed or in the closet with the deadbolt on it. Keep your car keys handy.
During a break-in, remain calm and don’t make a sound. Call 911 immediately. The dispatcher will stay on the phone with you until the police arrive, but always remember to stay calm.
When you have a break-in or attempted break-in, you’re left with an invasion of privacy feeling. It can really feel like you aren’t safe or able to be safe in your own home. Just like, with all things, time will heal this feeling. It helps to step up your security game, but the best thing you can do is accept that it happened and do everything you can to fix any issues and then keep going. Don’t let it stop you from living your life.