Indiantown family holds down crook

By John Bachman - bio | email
Posted by Rachel Leigh - email

INDIANTOWN, FL (WFLX) - A local homeowner says enough and fights back when he becomes the target of a burglar. The man and his son held down the would-be thief until police arrived.

"I put this because, last time, he could open this one," Miguel Juan Martin told us as he tugged on a brand new pad lock on his back gate. He has added some extra security to his property after a run in with a suspected burglar that was too close to comfort.

It started three weeks ago. Miguel says he noticed that some of his family's clothes were missing from their laundry room. "It makes you mad, you work hard to buy stuff and somebody come and stole it- it's not right."

Martin bought this house in 1993 and says he had never had a problem like this before.

But the missing laundry really upset him, and he was worried about having tools or something else stolen, so he started keeping watch for the clothing crook. And, sure enough, he returned Monday. Miguel says he watched him creep closer to the house until he got the laundry room. "While he was looking around, I turned the light on."

He told us when he came outside, the would be burglar took off, left his shoes behind, and then tried to make through the backyard which is full of clothes lines.

Martin says one of the clothes lines knocked the guy to the ground and that's where he and son then pounced. "I held him down like this with the hands back-both hands back."

In about five minutes, a Sheriff's deputy arrived and arrested Fernando Morales-Mendez for attempted burglary and breaking Miguel's fence.

Nothing was stolen this time, and Miguel now thinks he can relax and not worry anymore about his laundry or anything else going missing.

Deputies say the suspect was drunk at the time, and they recommend leaving the arrests up to them.

Martin says he hopes the suspect gets deported because he has given a lot of hard working immigrants a bad name.