"On January 24, 1997 our family was a
victim of a crime. Thanks to the
knowledge my daughter received from DARE, further
tragedy was avoided.
A man was stopped in East Galesburg on a traffic violation and he gave an alias due to knowing there may be warrants for his arrest. Since he had no drivers license, the police officer put him into the front of her squad car uncuffed to take him to the Galesburg station for questioning. During their trip, he jumped out of the car and ran, finding someone to take him further into town. There, he started running throughout the residential neighborhoods. Since this was approximately 4 PM and school had just been let out, my 8 year old daughter had gone home. My husband usually arrives about 15 minutes after she gets home. She went into the family room and started her homework. She looked up and saw a man run up to our house and start to enter the back door. From what she learned in DARE, she ran and hid in her bedroom closet. The man then proceeded to dead lock the back door and go through the house, taking my husbands coat out of the closet and putting it on, going into our bedroom and making a phone call, then hiding in our three- year old son's closet.
During this time, the police were tracking him through the snow but lost him in our driveway area. My husband came home with our son and couldnít enter the back door due to it being dead bolted from the inside. Our daughter came out of her closet and tried to let him in but couldnít work the lock, so she let him in the sliding glass door. She tried to tell him there was a man in our attic (she thought from the noises she heard he had gone there), but knowing you canít enter our attic without a ladder, my husband didnít believe her. He is a police officer with the city and has been for 10 years. He went through the house and put his gun away and his handcuffs. My daughter tried to tell him again, there was a man in the house. Seeing how upset she was my husband finally went and looked. He found him in our sonís closet (the one with my husband's uniforms) and a fight ensued. My husband yelled for our daughter to hand him his handcuffs, and when she tried, the man shoved her down. My husband then yelled for her to call 911. She did so, as she had been taught, and the police arrived within minutes since they were in the area."