- An elderly woman managed to wrestle off an intruder at her home
- The man was a neighbor
- He had taken jewelry and cash and was on his way out when the lady spotted him
A 91-year-old great-grandmother of Northfield, New Jersey, managed to fight off an intruder with her own fists.
Florence Graham was watching TV in her living room around midnight, when she suddenly heard a noise and something wriggling along the carpet. It was a man, but she recognized him. The intruder was her neighbor.
Michael Flaherty had sometimes shoveled snow from her driveway, so they had a –until then– cordial relationship.
The man had gotten cash and jewelry from Graham’s residence, and was on his way out. But Graham was not going to let him go that easily, and they started to fight.
Capt. Steve Steinecke commented that upon arriving in the old lady’s home, they found her with "blood on her robe, blood on her hands, blood on her forehead.”
Graham had managed to grab Flaherty’s cellphone. "I kept saying to him, 'Get out of here, Michael. Get out of here, ' " she told police. It turned out that the phone was key to locating the thief, who was later found underneath his bed. He was arrested immediately.
Another neighbor declared that it was not the first time Flaherty had done the same kind of crimes against other people from the area. “He broke into one other home, two houses away, where he was doing some work for the people,” the woman said.
Graham has stated that "there's got to be a special place in hell for him. You just don't do that."