What to Do if You Discover an Intruder

Most criminals will not attempt to enter a home without authorization when the owner is at home. Occasionally, they will make a mistake and enter when someone is at home. In this case, one should leave immediately to ensure they are out of harm’s way.

Never try to detain a criminal on your own. You don’t know if they have a weapon or what state of mind they are in. It’s much safer to try and scare them and let them go.

Don’t try to catch them. Instead, make as much noise as possible. Scream, call the police and throw some things on the floor. If there is a burglar in your home, he or she will start running and you will be safe.

If you come home and notice an open door and realize that there’s somebody inside moving around, don’t disturb them. Call the police right away and give them all the information that you can, possibly including a strange car parked outside or the number of people that you saw in your house.

When you file a report with the police, they would usually provide you with a reference number. If they don’t give you one, ask for it. You will need it in the future, especially if you have homeowner’s insurance.

Write down everything you remember as soon as you can. Possibly use your smartphone to shoot a video of the evidence. Give police as much information about the stolen property as possible, including makes, models and serial numbers of the stolen items.

Finally, review your home and your security to identify how the burglar got in. Did they find a weakness in your existing security? Did they simply smash the glass in the door? Identify vulnerabilities and quickly fix them. There are ample security systems and advanced measures that can be taken as preventative measures.

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