83-Year-Old Holds Back Would-Be Home Invader

By: Karen Morfitt
By: Karen Morfitt

A homeowner's threats to call police send a would-be home invader running Wednesday morning as he's attempting to break the lock, and she's holding the door closed.

Colorado Springs police say it happened around 9:30 a.m. at a home near N. Institute and Filmore. Initially the suspect rang the front doorbell. When no one answered the door, the suspect went to the back door and started using a tool to try to break through the door.

That's when the 83-year-old Betty Romano began yelling at him through a closed window, but the criminal was undeterred. She says she was forced to put her weight against the door to keep the man out of her home. She then yelled that she was going to call the police and that's when the suspect fled.

"Well the door was open, I'm holding it on this side and I said 'I’m calling the cops,' he’s still pounding with whatever and then I guess he believed me, because I’m still holding the door and he left.”

The would-be robber is been described as a Hispanic male, approximately 20-25 years old, 5-foot4 to 5-foot-6, with short hair and a short beard, wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt and dark-colored pants. He also had a noticeable tattoo on the right side of his neck.


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  • by anon Location: everywhere on Apr 15, 2011 at 10:38 AM
    this guy bert doesn't miss a thing, by the way here in Dallas, strange as it seems, we get KKTV, that's why it starts out ( for you burt ) w.w.w. he must really have a sharp axe
    • reply
      by Bert on Apr 15, 2011 at 12:20 PM in reply to anon
      What wrestling group is that? Texas is everything really bigger down their? Just asking cause your I.Q. seems about as big as the browns fan zipper size.
  • by brown's fan Location: cleveland on Apr 15, 2011 at 10:34 AM
    for boit. I have Ph D in criminal psy. so for giant pygmies like yourself, well i usually don't entertain myself with cases as yours, they go directly to the state hospital...in pueblo. i'm from el paso county,been watching you bert, careful, naw just an illusion, like yourself, just wondered how long it would be before the likes of you would display your continuous bull headedness, is that too many sylables for bertie? conspiracy could be at your west side doooor steeeepp.
    • reply
      by Bert on Apr 15, 2011 at 12:19 PM in reply to brown's fan
      As long as it parks inside the lines and isnt another black suburban (already got 2 there now)I really wont care. The neighbors might but, surprise they dont like me either.
  • by Mr x Location: se spgs on Apr 14, 2011 at 08:25 PM
    so what's all the hoopla about. some 83 old woman strutting her stuff. you're freaking lucky you're not dead! The punk chickened out!
  • by ANONYMOUS Location: c/s on Apr 14, 2011 at 07:38 PM
    BETTY , hats off to you but sweetie think about Mace or heck go for a cannon. There,s alot of idiots out there and we don,t want you to get hurt.
  • by Deborah Location: Colorado Springs on Apr 14, 2011 at 08:49 AM
    Way to go Betty! You are my Hero! Keep yourself safe FIRST. Pepper spray by both doors, maybe a security alarm too. Glad you are my friend!
  • by FarginBastige on Apr 14, 2011 at 08:09 AM
    @Liberty's Teeth - When it comes to self-defense, I don't think there's a jury in the world that would convict someone of 'mis-using' a product. If it were me, I'd use anything at my disposal. Fortunately, I have guns at my disposal. Please ... Make my day!
    • reply
      by Liberty's Teeth on Apr 14, 2011 at 09:22 AM in reply to FarginBastige
      FarginBastige - You think? There are people that have to fight the legal system for years for correctly using a handgun in a legitimate self defense. There's no reason I'd open myself up to the excess liability of using something like wasp spray to defend myself when pepper spray will do the same job just as well or better. Wasp spray is not even remotely the same substance as pepper spray and was never designed for use on people. It's terrible advice for anyone to state that it should be used as a dedicated self-defense tool. Me, I'll use the products specifically made for the purpose.
  • by pepper gel on Apr 14, 2011 at 08:06 AM
    Mace brand pepper gel. Won't blow back on you. Globs into putty on their face shoots 25 feet. Smears and turns to slime when water is applied trying to wash it off. Lasts for a complete painful hour. UV dyes skin for days.
  • by Liberty's Teeth on Apr 14, 2011 at 06:28 AM
    Please don't listen to anyone advocating wasp spray for self-defense use. Most insecticides are makred with a warning stating that it is a Federal offense to use the spray in a manner other than directed (this means on people.) Pepper or OC spray is a far more reliable defense tool and can easily be obtained in a product with just as much range and accuracy as wasp spray allegedly provides.
    • reply
      by LOL on Apr 14, 2011 at 07:20 AM in reply to Liberty's Teeth
      OMG, are you serious? Do you think if someone was defending themselves, especially Granny, that the Feds would be putting handcuffs on them? This type of thinking is what gives the criminals all the power to commit their crimes. I'm surprised you forgot to leave out being sued by the criminal for using wasp spray (or whatever means) to protect oneself.
      • reply
        by Liberty's Teeth on Apr 14, 2011 at 10:28 AM in reply to LOL
        At no point do I advise simply sitting back and just allowing yourself to become a victim. I'm sorry if you got that from my post. I'm a firm believer that you use the most effective tool for the job, and in my experience there is nothing that makes insecticide a better defense tool than OC spray. That's my only point.
    • reply
      by Bert on Apr 14, 2011 at 08:03 AM in reply to Liberty's Teeth
      You are almost right, the true fact is that missuse is related more to making a narcotic or explosive out of it, a simple OOPS wrong can could explain away your first reasoning. As for the second wasp sprays spray in a more close stream as for pepper sprays most of them spray a fog that in alot of cases comes back onto the person needing the defense of it disapling themselfs. The pepper sprays that do spray long distances and stay in a stream and costs alot of money. So buy a cheap can of mace and a can of bug be gone and put them both on the nightstand. Accidents will happen?!
      • reply
        by Liberty's Teeth on Apr 14, 2011 at 10:15 AM in reply to Bert
        The warning label never says what you CAN'T use the product for, that's up to the courts to establish. Ultimately, people can use whatever they want to defend themselves, but I'd just as soon NOT have the home invader sue me and win for using a poisonous insecticide on him instead of an approved self defense spray. It's really the choice of each individual person, but everyone should be aware of the consequences of ANY method you use to defend yourself. By the way, a can of OC gel cost $19.99, has a range equal to any insect killer and zero overspray, even in tight quarters. On top of that, there's often even a UV marker in the gel.
  • by Al Location: Falcon on Apr 14, 2011 at 05:53 AM
    Must have been a very inexperienced young thug who got scared away by a threat to "call" the police. Experienced thugs would have just pushed that door open and done what they came there to do. Now if Granny was an armed citizen, just imagine how shocked this punk would have been breaking into the back door only to meet granny carrying a handgun. She got extremely lucky this creep got scared of only her words and ran away. That's not typical criminal behavior. Hopefully, today she's heading to a gun shop and buy's herself some personal home protection.
  • by Make my Day Location: Colorado Springs on Apr 14, 2011 at 03:57 AM
    Like some of the rest of the people on this forum I have gun(s) and will use THEM. Come on in I have a surprise waiting for you on the other side of the door or window. I will not hesitate to shoot and then ask questions later and I am in the process of getting my concealed weapons license. Tired of our society where the thugs and criminals have more rights than I do.
    • reply
      by Bert on Apr 14, 2011 at 07:59 AM in reply to Make my Day
      Please make sure you take a good class that explains when and why lethal force is authorized. You idiots spewing your kill everyone message is just what the brady supporters love to throw infront of congress everytime they take the floor you help them paint us as a bunch of blood thirsty anarchysts that WANT TO KILL. Use your head not your emotions.
      • reply
        by anon on Apr 15, 2011 at 05:24 AM in reply to Bert
        CLASSES FOR CCP DO NOT TEACH LAW, THE SHERIFF'S OFFICE HAS THE CITING FOR USE OF DEADLY FORCE. OR YOU CAN CHECK CRS ON SELF DEFENSE. DID I SAY ANON? IT'S ME BOIT, FROM CLEVELAND, FUNNY HOW THIS SITE SHOWS UP IN BROWN'S TOWN
        • reply
          by Bert on Apr 15, 2011 at 06:41 AM in reply to anon
          Maybe you should stick to cleveland then you idiot out here we do include a law section in some of our classes, actualy taught by defense lawyers. Maybe thats why cleveland sucks so much everyone has a gun with the minimal to no education.
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