MIDDLEBORO (CBS) — A 14-year-old girl armed with a knife helped police catch a career criminal they believe broke into her Middleboro home on Friday morning.
Avery Cormier was sleeping in her Spruce Street home when she was awakened by the sound of an intruder. She saw him stealing things, grabbed a knife and confronted him. The man, later identified as 58-year-old Joseph Ridge of Bourne, dropped the items he allegedly stole and fled outside. But the girl took a video of him running away.
“I got him out of the house. I scared him. I took a video of his truck driving off so I have his license plate number,” the teenager said in the chilling 911 call released by police.
Officers used this information to track Ridge as he crossed the Bourne Bridge and arrest him.
“I really didn’t realize she had the courage in her to stay so calm under fire,” said Avery’s mother, Dianne Tautkus. “She grabbed two kitchen steak knives and she came back and stood outside the door and started yelling at him, ‘Get out of my house. Get out of my house. You don’t belong here.
Police said Ridge was already out on bail for an unrelated incident and had a record dating back to 1980, with more than 140 indictments and a history of violence.
“A person who makes the decision to break into a house at 7:20 a.m. and terrorize a 14-year-old girl should not get out of jail,” Middleboro Police Chief Joseph Perkins said. to reporters, adding that the break-in appeared to be random.
Perkins said Avery was an honor roll student at Middleboro High School and was home for the day as it is Good Friday. She was not injured.
Ridge is charged with aggravated break and enter, trespassing, attempted theft and disorderly conduct. He will be arraigned on Friday afternoon at Wareham District Court.