The intruder gripped her throat and told her to stop screaming.
Michele Cox took out the trash and went back in her Kessler Park home. Entering her bedroom, she heard her door open again. Thinking the wind blew it open, she went back to close it.
“I got to the hallway, and I had this young man standing in my hallway,” she says. “I asked him who he was and what he was doing and what did he want.”
Cox kept yelling.
“He slammed me down on the ground and got on top of me and put one hand on my throat and one hand over my mouth and covered my face. And he said, ‘If you do not quit screaming or talking, I’m going to kill you.’ I thought he was going to kill me.”
Cox kept kicking, and he finally got off her, but didn’t leave.
“He held me hostage in my house for two hours,” she says. “I finally said, ‘Take my car and get out of my house.’”
He had been trying to break into houses in the neighborhood and was hiding from the police. He locked her in the bathroom, rummaged through the house and put on some of her clothes. He then stole her purse and a rented 2009 Chrysler PT Cruiser.
The robber escaped with her credit cards, cash and car.
“It was more than what I would want anybody in their life to ever have to go through,” she says. “It was unreal.”
The robber was caught two days later driving her rental car in Irving. Police later found that, as a prisoner in Huntsville for aggravated assault and burglary, he received a broken jaw from a fight. After being transferred to a medical unit in Galveston, he escaped and stole a car before heading north.
Dallas Police Deputy Chief Rick Watson of the Southwest Patrol Division advises residents who find themselves in a similar situation to comply with the criminal’s demands.
“You don’t know what this individual will do or not do,” he says.
If someone enters your home while you are there, Watson recommends exiting immediately if possible, hiding, or calling police if you can get to a phone.
The experience was frightening, but Cox says she is recovering.
“I’m doing OK, but I’m still a little scared at night,” she says. “It’s getting better each day.”