83-year-old woman beats intruder with her cane

ATHENS COUNTY, Ohio - An 83-year-old woman said she used her cane to fight off an intruder who broke into her home Monday.

According to the Athens County Sheriff's Office, the incident occurred on Nov. 11 at the home of Rozella Brown.

Authorities said Brown heard her doorbell ring, but did not answer it or look to see who was at the door.

A short time later, Brown reported that she saw a person crawling across her kitchen floor, moving toward her bedroom. She said she then went into the bedroom and found an unknown male, whom she immediately began striking with her cane.

"I never even thought of 911. I just thought I could chase him out," she said. "Wherever I could find to hit him, on the head, the back, I just started swinging. I didn't care where I hit him."

She said the male then went into her living room and took her billfold, which contained about $100, from her purse.

Brown, who uses a cane after a stroke three years ago, said she continued to hit the suspect with her cane as he left her home, and that's when she asked what his name was, he clearly replied, "Austin."

"I kept asking him what he wanted and who he was. He wouldn't answer me, so then I started swinging quickly and faster," she said.

Brown said she was going to use the money that was stolen to buy Christmas gifts for her great-grandchildren.

John Brown, Rozella's husband of 63 years, said he's proud of his wife, even if he got away without her getting a good look at him.

"She didn't get hurt, so I'm content about that. I can make other $100 but I can't get another wife," he said.

If she had to do it all over again Rozella said, "I would swing a little harder."

She described the suspect as being "school aged," of average height and weight, wearing a gray corduroy hooded jacket and blue jeans.

Athens County Sheriff Pat Kelly says homeowners have every right to protect themselves and their property in their homes. He said Brown was lucky the burglar didn't fight back.

The Athens County Sheriff's Office is investigating the incident.


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