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12-Year-Old Girl Helps Catch Burglar

A 12-year-old girl who was at home from school because of an illness helped apprehend a burglar who entered her house on Tuesday morning. The burglar was identified as Edward Gerald Gladwell, 40, of Main Street in West Haven on Thursday, according to police spokesman Sgt. James Perez.

Gladwell was charged with burglary in the second degree and larceny in the third degree. He appeared in Bridgeport Superior Court on Wednesday and was held on a $50,000 bond. Police said that Gladwell was on probation from a previous home invasion and broke into the home to support his $300 a day heroin addiction.The girl was in her room in the house on South Benson Road when she heard a noise coming from her parent's bedroom, which is next to her room. The sound turned out to be Gladwell talking to his mother on the phone, while going through drawers in her parent's room, taking items. The girl planned her escape from the house, thinking on her feet, while staying light on them, the entire way out.She put on socks and snuck quietly past her parents room and then to avoid creaks in the stairs, grabbed the railing and slid down. She snuck out the front door and ran to her neighbor's house, where a neighbor was watering a garden, and called 911 there.Police arrived on the scene to find Gladwell coming down the stairs holding assorted jewelry, electronics and $19 in cash. He originally told the police that he was the gardner, but eventually retracted that story. When police found him he repeated multiple times, "this is not good.""It kind of happened pretty fast, so, once it happened, it didn't seem real. It was pretty scary," the girl told Fairfield Patch. The girl's mother told Fairfield Patch that she was proud of the way her daughter responded to the situation and is "relieved she's fine and the guy was apprehended." The mother and girl were not identified at their request.

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