An 11-year-old girl in North Branch Township, Michigan, was home alone when she heard a man knocking on all the doors of the house. When she didn’t answer, 53-year-old James Wasson forced his way in. Scared, the girl hid in a bathroom closet. When Wasson opened the closet door, he was greeted by the 11-year-old holding a shotgun pointed right at him. Wasson immediately fled the scene but was captured moments later by authorities.
Police responded to the girl’s Five Lakes Road home a little before 4:00 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 30. About 30 minutes later, Wasson’s car was located by police in Imlay City, Michigan. He and a female suspect, 31-year-old Rhonda Steward, were taken into custody.
Authorities clam the pair has robbed between 25 and 50 homes since December, according to WNEM.
“Her father is an avid hunter, she is familiar with weapons and inside that closet is where the gun case is,” Lapeer County Detective sergeant Jason Parks is reported saying by KFOR News. The girl was not harmed during the incident.
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Wasson and Steward, both from Detroit, Michigan, are being held in the Lapeer County Jail. Both are facing charges of first-degree home invasion, second-degree home invasion, and burglary tool possession, as reported by KFOR.
Steward is facing additional charges of receiving and concealing stolen property valued between $1,000 and $20,000, felon in possession of a firearm, and firearm with commission of a felony, also reported by KFOR.
Wasson’s bond is set at $200,000 and Steward’s is set at $100,000, ABC 12 reports. Both remain at the Lapeer County Jail awaiting formal charges.
“Due to this little girl, her keeping her composure, she was able to observe and articulate what she saw. It definitely made a huge difference in this case and because of that ability, people are in custody,” Parks is quoted saying.
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Photo: Wikimedia, ABC12