A proactive homeowner put a stop to a rash of early-morning burglaries in a northeast Houston neighborhood by opening fire on a suspect.
Residents in the area of Fulton near Dipping said two homes were targeted before 7 a.m. on Tuesday.
A woman said she arrived at her home about 7 a.m. and found a stranger in her bed. He apparently also made himself a snack while inside the house.
Houston police said the man broke out a window to get inside the woman's home. He also ripped copper out of her air conditioner, police said.
The owner of the second home woke up when he heard someone inside. He said he originally thought it was his daughter.
"I got up and I hollered at her and I heard a man answer me," Bennie DiMarco said. "When the man answered me, I knew right then I needed to get my gun."
DiMarco said the intruder was running through his home. DiMarco said he confronted the man in the garage.
"He put his hands up and said, 'Don't shoot me. Don't shoot me. I was just looking for a place to sleep,'" DiMarco said. "Then he hit my garage door button, my garage door opened and he took off running."
DiMarco said he then fired shots toward the man.
"I was still in my underclothes. I come out and I shot at him," DiMarco said. "I shot at him twice, about 20 feet away."
DiMarco said he does not know if he wounded the man.
"I know one thing – I don't think he's going to want to come back," DiMarco said.
Houston police have not released a detailed description of the man.
Neighbors said there have been similar burglaries in the neighborhood recently. Investigators have not said if Tuesday's burglaries may be connected to those.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.