Talking burglary suspect arrested in home

Posted: Tuesday, February 16, 2010

ANCHORAGE - A burglary suspect who stopped to chat with people inside homes has been charged, along with an accomplice, with four felonies.

Twenty-year-old Brenton Kehoe and 18-year-old Gilberto Gutierrez are charged with two counts each of burglary and theft.

Judy Powell was one of the homeowners. She awoke Wednesday to a light flicked on and off in the study. She heard cabinet doors or drawers banging open and shut. Then a figure moved into the bedroom.

"I'm awake, but not completely awake, and it's dark. So I start talking to this person," Powell told the Anchorage Daily News. "Then he starts having a conversation with me and it takes me a few minutes to realize that that is not my son."

The man at the foot of her bed told Powell two people were waiting for her outside.

"I'm going, 'Who are you? How'd you get into my house?' " Powell said. "At that point, I'm like, I want to get you out of my house because I don't know who you are or if you have friends with you that are in my house."

Her husband, Eli Powell, a doctor and retired Air Force colonel, dragged the intruder down to the front door, paused to open it and tossed him out.

Police were still investigating a half hour later when they got another report of a burglary in progress a half mile away. Tracks led from the Powells' home to the home of Shawn Knudeson.

Knudeson said she heard someone come in through the door, but thought it was her son or husband. When she spotted a flashlight beam in her living room, she realized the family wasn't alone.

A man she identified as Kehoe came into her bedroom.

"I said, 'You've got the wrong house. I don't know where you think you're supposed to be, but you've got the wrong house,"' Knudeson said.

Police arrived and the second man ran out the back door. Police arrested Gutierrez in the driveway. Kehoe was found in a bedroom where Knudeson's 10-year-old had been sleeping.

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