Burglar arrested after boy calls 911

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SAN DIEGO — A 43-year-old man was jailed Thursday on suspicion of burglarizing a home in 4S Ranch while a 12-year-old boy was home alone, authorities said.

Duane Edward Herrmann was booked into San Diego Central Jail on suspicion of residential burglary around 3:15 a.m., according to the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department.

Herrmann allegedly broke a window to enter the residence in 4S Ranch around 4:10 p.m. Wednesday. The boy who was hiding in a bathroom alone called 911 and deputies arrived in time to confront Herrmann, sheriff’s Sgt. James Cady said in a statement.

Deputies chased the suspect briefly before losing sight of him. Cady said that after an exhaustive search of the area, a service dog found Herrmann hiding in the backyard of a home at 9518 Lavender Star Drive. He was arrested without further incident and taken to an area hospital for treatment of dog bite injuries, Cady said.

The boy, who was uninjured, told Fox5 that he knew the man attempting to break into his house was a fraudulent delivery guy.

“I checked to see who it was and it’s a guy with make shift box,” he said. “He looked in the window and thought no one was home. He peaked in right at me, but didn’t see me.”

“I heard glass breaking so I hid in my brother’s bathroom and locked the door and called 911 and 5 seconds after I hear the glass breaking again. So I knew he was in,” the boy said.

He locked himself in the bathroom, stepped inside the bathroom tub, dialed 911 and waited.

His mother was driving home when she was told her son was locked in the bathroom and a burglary was happening.

“I cannot tell you how frightening it was not knowing if he was safe or not,” she said.

The family said Herrmann might be responsible for a break-in in December, when they were fumigating their house.

“He knew where he wanted to go. He knew the layout and went directly to my valuable,” she said.


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