NEWTON, Mass. — A senior citizen woke up to an intruder in her home early Sunday morning in what police say is the eighth home break-in over the last week. The 74-year-old woman was home alone as her daughter and son-in-law, Sophia and Nima Vaulina, were out of state on a ski trip, the couple told Boston 25 News Monday.
The woman woke up shortly after 3 a.m. to noises inside the Countryside Road home and opened the door to find a man about to enter another bedroom.
“She basically was very startled. She just didn’t know what to do, she kind of froze,” Nima said of his mother-in-law. “She was alone in the house. I would have been scared if I were her too.”
The man quickly put on a ski mask, said something she did not understand and unexpectedly waved goodbye before running away, the couple said. She then barricaded herself in her bedroom and waited in fear until daylight.
Because she does not speak English, she did not call 911. She tried calling her daughter, but the family was sleeping. They would finally alert Newton Police a few hours later.
“She was in the bedroom putting chairs next to the door,” Sophia said of her mother. “She closed her bedroom and didn’t know whether he left or not until the morning [when] she decided to come out and see whether he was still there.”
Police believe the intruder fled from the property toward the country club behind the home. Of the eight home break-ins Newton Police are investigating over the past week, residents were home at the time in four of them.
“In all the years I’ve been a police officer, this has only happened a few times,” Lt. Bruce Apotheker said of the unusual string of bold crimes in just a matter of days. “It’s concerning to us to have somebody in their home while it’s being broken into. We don’t know what could happen, we don’t know if the person’s armed or not.”
The suspect on Sunday was described as a man about 40 years old, 6-feet tall and 200 pounds with grayish-red eyebrows.
A victim last week described two people in her home as she called police from a neighbor’s house.
It is unclear if there is one or two people committing the crimes.
Newton Police urge residents to lock their doors and windows, use motion lights and remove ladders, chairs and other objects outside the home that burglars could use to climb and hop inside windows. Anyone with information is encouraged to call police at 617-796-2121.