In the early hours of Saturday morning, Vanessa was awake with her nine-month-old daughter when she heard loud banging in her basement suite in Langford.
She did not want to use her full name, to protect her identity, given the nature of the incident.
She thought perhaps it was her husband, who had fallen asleep on the couch in the living room earlier that evening, so she went into the hallway to see what the noise was. She saw the light on in the laundry room with the door closed, but thought her husband was just grabbing a blanket.
She heard more crashing “it sounded like metal falling,” she said, so she texted the tenants in the suite upstairs to see if they had dropped something. But the tenants upstairs texted back saying they thought it was Vanessa’s family making the noise.
Vanessa heard voices coming from the laundry room, and that’s when she called for her husband. She told her husband someone was trying to break in, so he went outside with the tenant upstairs to see what was going on. Her husband came back inside and said that they could see someone in the laundry room in the basement suite.
She called 911 and locked herself in the bedroom with her daughter, while her husband tried to keep the intruder contained by holding the door of the laundry room shut.
“My hubby is a big guy, so he was able to hold the door shut until the police arrived,” she said.
Dispatch was telling her to remain calm, but Vanessa said she was nearly hysterical, because she did not know if the intruder had a weapon.
“I kept telling dispatch, ‘Don’t let anything happen to my husband,’” she said. “Not knowing if someone could hurt your family, it’s just terrifying.”
Vanessa said she was relieved and thankful that the police arrived quickly, “West Shore RCMP were awesome, they were on the scene within five minutes,” she said. She was still on the phone when she heard dispatch say that someone was in custody.
She heard the police enter the basement suite and the the intruder yelling “I didn’t do it, I didn’t do it”. When she came out of the bedroom she said the intruder smelled, very strongly, of marijuana.
She later discovered that the young man was high and confused and thought her home was his house, and was trying to get in. She said their front and back door were both locked, and that after he pounded on the door, she figures he saw the window in the laundry room and broke through the screen to get in, and then he couldn’t figure out how to get out.
Upon trying to get in, the intruder knocked over their barbecue and threw items off of the upstairs patio in frustration. Vanessa found his cellphone in the laundry room after he was taken away by police, and presumed the voices she heard during the initial break in was the intruder talking on the phone.
She said the intruder was charged with breaking and entering and released on the promise to appear. The Gazette contacted West Shore RCMP about this incident and haven’t received a response as of yet.
Vanessa said the young man isn’t known to her or her family.
The couple has another son, who is disabled, and cannot move, so she feels very lucky that he wasn’t home during the incident.
“I’m still pretty in shock that it happened,” she said. “I’m just glad it went how it did, not violent and messy.”
Vanessa said she is an anxious person to begin with, but both her and her husband are feeling on edge. After police left and as her husband was dozing off, she plugged her phone charger into her phone, and the slightest sound made her husband perk up, she said.
Vanessa always takes precautions, but she said it was a good reminder for people to use their street smarts and be diligent about locking their windows and doors at night, especially on the ground level.