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Burglars cut power to Madera home during break-in

The family wanted to share this story as a warning to neighbors, but it took them three days to work up the courage.
Wednesday, July 30, 2014
Madera Police are investigating a frightening home break-in. A local family had barricaded themselves in a closet. They hid from several burglars that had cut the power to their home, then ransacked it.

Right now investigators are still searching for additional suspects following one arrest. The family wanted to share this story as a warning to neighbors, but it took them three days to work up the courage.

Police arrested a teen involved in Sunday's break-in. And they say this may not be the suspects' only crime.

"I feared for my daughter and my dad," said Tswanna DeLaRosa. She is still distraught over someone breaking into her home around 2:30 Sunday morning.

She says it began with someone pounding on her front door, and then rings on the doorbell. DeLaRosa was watching TV with her 13-year-old daughter at the time/ Frightened; they quietly ran upstairs to hide.

"By the time we got to the top of the stairs, I could hear the screens coming off the windows," she said.

Police say before the teenage crook broke into the home he went to the outdoor electrical panel and cut power to the house.

"When they cut the lights they knew what they were doing," DeLaRosa said. "That's what scared me."

That's when DeLaRosa and her family, fearing the worst, locked themselves in an upstairs closet.

"It was a possibility that it going to be the last time that we were gonna be alive," she said. "That's usually what you see. People don't usually come in your house and you're okay."

Police arrived within minutes and saw the suspect run off. "The suspect ran out the back window," said Sgt. Johnnie Smith. "Other officers gathered in the area, a chase ensued. The suspect jumped over a couple of fences."

The teen was arrested after being bitten by a police K9. But his 2 or 3 partners got away with the family's 55 inch TV. Inside the home investigators found the suspect had stuffed a bag full of video games and other belongings.

"You have no idea what this does to people, how it affects us," DeLaRosa said. "Last night was the first night we actually went to bed before the sun came up."

Police are still looking for those other suspects. They say there's been at least one other home burglary where power was cut before the break-in.
The DeLaRosa family has put a lock on their outdoor electrical box and they're getting a home security system.



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