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Man Breaks Into Elderly WW2 Veteran’s Home Thinking He’ll Be An Easy Target, Quickly Regrets It

Note: we are republishing this story amid recent reports of a surge in burglaries across America during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

A burglar who thought a 95-year-old man would be an easy target is surely regretting his decision after the man and his daughter fought back, chased the burglar down the street and held him until police arrived.

The ill-fated break-in occurred in Wisconsin while Fred Bennett was watching TV, according to WTMJ. 

Fred, a retired firefighter and Marine who served in the Pacific during World War II, was sitting in his living room when he heard his dog Hugo barking.

"[Hugo] must have seen him," Fred told the Journal Sentinel. When Fred opened a bedroom door to see what Hugo was barking at, he found himself looking at the intruder. 

"I was almost standing nose to nose with him," he said. "That was a shocker."

Fred yelled at the alleged burglar, 53-year-old Gary Wells, to get out of his house. 

"At first I told him, 'What are you doing here?' Then I told him, 'Get the hell out of here,'" he said, according to WTMJ. "Then he stopped and then he said, 'I want your wallet, give me your wallet. Cause I'll kill ya. I'll kill the dog."

Fred wasn't scared. Instead of complying with Wells' demands, he grabbed him and pushed him against the wall. During the struggle, Wells reached in Fred's pocket and stole his wallet. 

"Then I was mad," Fred said, according to WTMJ. "Then I was trying to get the wallet back from him and I was reaching around his waist and we both went down on the floor." 

As the two men crashed on the floor, Fred's daughter, 51-year-old Mary Bennett, came running down the stairs.

"As soon as I came through that doorway I see my dad on the floor with his arms wrapped around this guy standing in our kitchen," Mary said, according to WTMJ. "I didn't even think I just reacted." 

Mary grabbed Wells and the two fought their way into the kitchen. After Mary got her father's wallet back, Wells escaped out the back door. 

But Mary wasn't done with him. While her father called police, Mary chased Wells down the street. 

"We jumped over two fences and ran through 12 yards," she told the Journal Sentinel. As she ran, Mary banged on doors and windows, telling neighbors she was chasing a burglar and to call police. 

"I could have caught him at any point," Mary said of Wells, according to the Journal Sentinel. "But I didn't want to tackle him because nobody knows I'm out here." 

As Mary chased him, Wells reportedly said he was sorry and pleaded for forgiveness. But Mary didn't stop chasing him. 

Once she heard sirens, Mary grabbed Wells and held him until police arrived. He has been charged with felony burglary. 

After thinking over their experience, the father and daughter say they aren't sure they would fight off another burglar, admitting what they did was very dangerous. 

"After it was all over, I thought, boy that was a dumb thing I did," Fred told the Journal Sentinel. 

Sources: Journal Sentinel, WTMJ / Featured Image: Pixabay / 

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