Woman fakes heart attack to escape burglary, get suspect to help call 911

Posted at 10:36 AM, Nov 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-12 11:36:22-05

By Anne Marie Hagerty

MATTHEWS, NC (WBTV) - Police are looking for a man who invaded the home of an 85-year-old woman in Matthews.

That woman, resourceful, brave and was able to think fast to defend herself by pretending to have a heart attack.

The invader left the woman unharmed, but the neighborhood is still rattled and very sad about the invasion, especially because it was against a woman who lives alone.

“She’s a woman that ah, I’ve never really seen anybody like her,” said Tim Sessoms, a neighbor.

Saturday morning around 10:30 a.m., police say a stranger knocked at the woman’s door wearing a hat with dark grayish-green work style clothing on.

Officers responded the call for a burglary that reportedly took place on the 900 block of Evian Lane.

He said he was there with a gas company, but when she said she hadn’t called anyone, he pushed his way inside the woman’s house.

“I was very worried for her because she is like 85 years old and lives alone,” said Sessoms.

The victim said her faith in God kept her calm while the man demanded she give him money.

All the while he was searching her home, she was brainstorming ways to get him out of her house.

Then she decided to fake a heart attack.

“I’m proud of the fact that she was able to do that for herself,” said Sessoms.

The woman told me the intruder said he didn’t want to hurt her, then went to get her a phone for her to call 911.

The intruder left, she called the police and they arrived shortly after.

This is a potential van Matthews police are looking for that they believe the suspect was driving.

“We look out for her," said neighbor Barry Roach. "Neighbors looks out for neighbors in this neighborhood in many neighborhoods in Charlotte and Matthews in particular.”

Neighbors are on the lookout, but still shaken after today’s home invasion.

“It’s crazy to think something like that could happen at 10 a.m. in Matthews, North Carolina," said Sessoms. "It’s just unconscionable for me.”

The neighborhood says this is a reminder to be aware of your surroundings, even at home.

“Today’s incident is an example of how things can happen when you let your guard down or feel safe and you need to realize that sometimes there may be crime that comes your way that you aren’t expecting,” said Roach.

Right now Matthews Police are looking for the man who invaded the home.

The suspect is described as a black male, wearing a hat with dark-grayish work style clothing. He was seen driving what may have been a beige or tan Dodge or Chrysler minivan.

If anyone has any information regarding this case, they are asked to e-mail scooper@matthewsnc.govor call (704) 847-5555.

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