October 10, 2012

Home invasion reported in Atwater

An 81-year-old Atwater woman is safe after fending off her assailant during a home invasion robbery Tuesday morning, according to Lt. Sam Joseph of the Atwater Police Department.

Atwater police believe the robber entered the home in the 1300 block of Park Street around midnight through a sliding glass rear door, alerting the victim. Officers said the victim was on the computer and left to investigate the sound, finding nothing suspicious.

When she returned to the computer, she heard a man's voice asking, "Where's the money?" and turned to see who it was, police said. The intruder then demanded she turn away, facing the computer.

The woman attempted to press her medical alert necklace before the robber grabbed the device from around her neck, Joseph said. The victim then grabbed a dining room chair and threw it at the robber.

The robber grabbed the woman's bag, which contained credit cards, a checkbook and $110 cash, before fleeing on foot.

Joseph said the victim's perseverance probably saved her life and it's an important lesson for Atwater residents to remember. "Never give up," he said. "Keep fighting to defend yourself."

The robber's described as a tall, slender white male in his 20s. He was wearing a brown ski mask with a white colored T-shirt and shorts.

Anyone with information about this incident should call Atwater police at (209) 357-6396.

Reporter Ramona Giwargis can be reached at (209) 385-2477 or rgiwargis@mercedsunstar.com.

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